Press Release
February 19, 2006


Senate Minority Leader Aquilino Nene Q. Pimentel, Jr. (PDP-Laban) today said the 1986 EDSA Revolution should be celebrated by the Filipino people with undiminished fervor if only to give due importance to a historic event that saw democracy in the country restored after nearly 14 years of dictatorship.

Pimentel said any attempt to downplay the 20th anniversary of EDSA -1, as the Arroyo administration seems to be doing, will be a great disservice to the lasting legacy of the bloodless uprising which inspired the oppressed peoples of many other countries to take up arms against authoritarian rule.

I think recalling EDSA-1 is a patriotic undertaking that must be perpetuated in the same manner that we recall Lapu Lapu's victory over Magellan in the Battle of Mactan and our liberation from the colonial rule of Spain and later of the United States, he said.

The minority leader said that for as long as the nation suffers from misrule economic deprivation and corruption, there will always be disenchanted groups that will fight for change in the political leadership and duplicate the 1986 people power revolt.

But seldom does a historical event repeat itself. The spirit probably may be replicated. But there must be complete action on the part of the people. More rhetoric will get them nowhere, he said.

Pimentel, however, agreed with the observation of other personalities that EDSA-1 was mainly a Metro Manila affairs. He said there is very little identification with that event by the people from Mindanao and the Visayas.

But the significance of the event is still worthwhile. EDSA People Power-I gave us back democratic space. That is why we are able to talk about it and denounce abuses, the lone senator from Mindanao said.

Saying it's understandable why Mrs. Arroyo does not feel enthusiastic about the coming EDSA-1 celebration, Pimentel said it's probably because she knew she fell short of living up to the ideals of truth, transparency and respect for democratic rights that make up the legacy of this political upheaval.

He said it's pretty obvious that the President is wary that the time is very much ripe for another people power which may cause her own downfall.

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