2 rallies held to reject cha-cha, keep people power spirit alive

The rally spearheaded by the People’s Coalition for Democracy – Negros in front of the Bacolod City Government Center replica at the public plaza.*CPG photo

Two rallies were held in Bacolod City on Sunday, February 25, to keep the spirit of the EDSA People Power Revolution alive and to oppose charter change (cha-cha).

About 100 members of the Federation of Urban Poor (FedUp) Negros gathered at the statue of senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino at Araneta Avenue in the morning and 700 other protestors converged in front of the Bacolod City Government Center replica at the public plaza in the afternoon for a rally spearheaded by the People’s Coalition for Democracy – Negros (PCDN) to mark the 38th anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution that ousted then president Ferdinand Marcos Sr. from power.

Leaders of the rally at the plaza said the push for Cha-Cha echoes the dark days of martial law under Marcos Sr.’ rule.

“Under the guise of economic progress, Cha-Cha poses grave risks to democracy, governance, economic stability, and national identity. The proposed amendments, particularly the extension of term limits, signal a clear intent to prolong the reign of the Marcos Jr. regime,” PCDN said.

“We cannot stand idly by as our hard-fought freedoms are jeopardized. It is incumbent upon us to stand united in defense of our democracy”, it added.

“The proposed cha-cha poses significant economic dangers, including the potential selling off of land and services to foreign entities. Allowing 100 percent ownership by foreigners threatens to erode national control over vital resources and infrastructure, exposing the country to exploitation and manipulation by external interests,” they added.

“Rather than Charter Change, the leaders of our nation should focus on peacebuilding. We must address the roots of civil unrest and armed conflict in the Philippines. Deep-seated injustices of poverty, landlessness, unemployment, and other inequities wreak havoc in the lives of so many Filipino families”, San Carlos Bishop Gerardo Alminaza said in a statement read for him at the rally.

“If we work for justice, we can reclaim our journey and rekindle the hope of a peoples’ power”, he said.

As the nation commemorates the spirit of EDSA, the PCDN said it calls on all Filipinos to reject the insidious agenda of Charter Change and uphold the legacy of people power.

“Through education, advocacy, and collective action, let us safeguard our democracy and ensure a future where the rights and welfare of all Filipinos are protected”, PCDN said.

The mobilization was participated by sectoral groups under Bayan Negros, One Negros Ecumenical Council, Partido Manggagawa, Paghimud-os Inc., National Union of Philippine Lawyers and the Kabataan Party-list Negros.

PCDN convenors are Alminaza, Iglesia Filipina Independiente Bishop Virgilio Amihan Jr., and former Negros Occidental governor Rafael “Lito” Coscolluela.


The about 100 Federation of Urban Poor in Negros (FedUp) members also staged a protest Sunday morning to call for freedom from the deceit of the “sham people’s initiative to change the Constitution”.

The FedUp protestors at the statue of senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino.*

“We insists on celebrating EDSA despite its not being declared a holiday. It’s celebration does not depend on the government but on us. We are EDSA People Power,” FedUp provincial head Joy Jarabelo said.

They are calling for freedom from the Charter change deceit in the guise of change in the economic provisions, when the real motive is political, she said.

“To deserve this freedom, FedUp refuses to forget, a historic event in Filipinos’ lives that brought freedom and democracy back in 1986, she said.

Now that freedom and democracy is wanting given the deceptions done by legislators to change the Constitution, she said.

“We lost that freedom and democracy during the Duterte administration with the massive killings and corruptions, and we are again faced with deception by the current administration,” she said.

“EDSA People Power was never a failure, it is instead the leaders whose vested interests are beyond satisfaction who failed and are trying to kill the values of EDSA,” she added.*

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