Change of wording as Marcos admin releases its first list of holidays

August 24, 2022 - 5:06 PM
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People Power Revolution
Thousands of Filipinos in the streets on Feb. 23, 1986 for the People Power Revolution. (Photo by Joey De Vera from People Power: The Philippine Revolution of 1986 via Flickr/Presidential Museum and Library PH 2010-2016)

The Palace on Tuesday released Proclamation 42 (series of 2022) that declares certain days as regular and special non-working holidays for 2023.

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr’s proclamation is similar to his predecessors’ lists of holidays.

It also recognizes the holiday commemorating the EDSA Revolution—as with some other past proclamations by his predecessors—despite earlier speculations that once elected, he would remove it from the national calendar.

While it looked similar to former president Rodrigo Duterte‘s and still retained the holiday, Marcos’ proclamation, removed lines acknowledging the historical event as having “restored” democracy and other reforms.

This earned the attention of some eagle-eyed Reddit users who noticed that it had a change of wording.

“Literal na binura ‘yung democracy,” a Redditor commented on Tuesday, juxtaposing the paragraphs of Marcos’ and Duterte’s proclamations.

In Marcos’ proclamation, a paragraph about the EDSA Revolution reads:

“WHEREAS, on 25 February 2023, the country will commemorate the 37th Anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution, which ushered political, social, and economic reforms in the country;”

Comparisons

Duterte

While Duterte’s last proclamation on the list of holidays under Proclamation 1236 (series of 2021) reads:

“WHEREAS, on 25 February 2022, the country will commemorate the 36th Anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution, which restored democracy and ushered political, social, and economic reforms in the country;”

In the 2021 declaration, Duterte’s Proclamation 986 bears the same paragraph.

The same also goes for his 2020 declaration under Proclamation 845.

However, in Duterte’s 2019 declaration under Proclamation 555, the word “democracy” was not included in the paragraph mentioning the historical revolution. It reads:

“WHEREAS, on 25 February 2019, the country will commemorate the 33rd Anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution, which restored and ushered political, social, and economic reforms in the country;”

The same goes for Duterte’s 2018 declaration under Proclamation 269 and the 2017 declaration under Proclamation 50.

Aquino

The word “democracy” was also not included in former late president Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III‘s 2016 declaration under Proclamation 1105, which reads:

“WHEREAS, on 25 February 2016, the country will commemorate the 30th Anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution, which restored and ushered political, social, and economic reforms in the country;”

The same can was also observed under Aquino’s 2015 declaration under Proclamation 831, which reads as:

“WHEREAS, the EDSA People Power Revolution, which restored and ushered political, social and economic reforms in the country, serves as an inspiration to Filipinos everywhere as a nation and as a people;”

The same paragraph appears in Aquino’s 2014 declaration under Proclamation 655, his 2013 declaration under Proclamation 459, his 2012 declaration under Proclamation 295 and his 2011 declaration under Proclamation 84.

Arroyo

In the 2010 declaration, the word “democracy” was not included in former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo‘s Proclamation 1841, which reads:

“WHEREAS, the EDSA People Power Revolution, which restored and ushered political, social and economic reforms in the country, serves as an inspiration to Filipinos everywhere as a nation and as a people;”

The paragraph about the revolution was also not included in Arroyo’s 2009 declaration under Proclamation 1699, where she moved some holidays to Monday so people could enjoy long weekends.

It was not indicated in Arroyo’s 2008 declaration under Proclamation 1463 as well, where she once again emphasized the movement of some holidays.

Meanwhile, following the Reddit post, another user noted that Marcos’ proclamation does not have the word “restored” in the paragraph pertaining to the EDSA Revolution.

The term “restored” can be found in the proclamations of Duterte, Aquino and in a few of Arroyo’s.

“Yes, this isn’t simply reverting to the old wording in my opinion. The removal of the word ‘restored’ (along with ‘democracy’) seems to have been done to deliberately downplay the impact of the People Power Revolution,” the Redditor commented.

On Ninoy Aquino Day on August 21, a special non-working holiday commemorating the late opposition senator’s death, most government agencies were mum on social media.

Some police stations downplayed his death and accused him of being a guerilla instead.

Ninoy was a staunch critic of Marcos Jr’s father, late dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr.

Ninoy’s death eventually paved the way to oust Marcos Sr. through the historical EDSA Revolution.

The revolution was a culmination of a series of public protests that happened for four days, which was a manifestation of Filipinos’ sentiments against totalitarian rule, according to the Official Gazette.

The “totalitarian rule” referred to Marcos Sr’s regime that lasted for 21 years. Nine years of it were under Martial Law, which saw various human rights cases of abuse and violations.

The demonstrations were also triggered by the rigged results of the snap presidential elections which declared Marcos Sr the winner, according to the Commission on Elections.

On the other hand, the National Citizen’s Movement for Free Elections declared Corazon “Cory” Aquino, widow of the opposition senator, as the winner.

The people’s rally turned into a vigil to guard the defecting military officials from Marcos Sr. It later progressed to Filipinos, including members of the Catholic Church, facing off armored tanks with linked arms.

On the last day of the bloodless revolution, Cory was sworn into office as the 11th and the first female president of the Philippines.