Press Release
February 26, 2009


Sen. Loren Legarda yesterday warned of another EDSA people power revolt if the 2010 presidential elections are cancelled to prolong the rule of the present administration.

"The acceptance by the world of another people power upheaval in the Philippines rests on the validity of its underlying reasons. This unpopular administration grappling with corruption controversies, for example, may bring unto itself another EDSA by canceling next year's elections in order to cling to power," she said.

In a press statement, Loren declared: "True, we don't need another EDSA, more so since we must work as a people united during these hard times. But this government must not push people to think desperately that badly needed change can only be realized by going out into the streets once more."

She added, "To me, what's troubling about this statement by government is that it may be conditioning the mind of the people not to do anything against moves to extend the President's term beyond 2010. One such move is the House's initiative to amend our Constitution without the participation of the Senate."

Loren was apparently referring to a statement made by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo that the world would not "tolerate" another people power uprising in the Philippines, similar to the EDSA I and EDSA II phenomenon that toppled the administrations of Presidents Ferdinand Marcos and Joseph Estrada, respectively.

The political opposition has also expressed fears that a move in the House of Representatives to amend the Constitution might lead to a cancellation of the 2010 presidential elections, especially if the political system is shifted from presidential to the parliamentary form of government. In her statement, Loren also said:

"The EDSA people power revolt in 1986 was an affirmation of the concept that state power emanates from the people, and that a government ceases to have any claim to legitimacy the moment it turns its back on the mandate to serve the people. "But what is worse than dereliction of duty by government is when it becomes too drunk with power to relinquish a mandate from the people that had either been withdrawn or which had already expired. "Those in power will forget the lesson of EDSA only at their peril. As declared by a wise statesman, those who forget history are bound to repeat it."

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