Palace joins nation in honoring sacrifices of martial law victims
By Jelly F. Musico


MANILA, Sept. 20 (PNA) – Malacanang joined the nation on Sunday in remembering and honoring the sacrifices of the victims of martial law which was imposed by the late former President Ferdinand Marcos on Sept. 21, 1972.

”With courage, they defied harassment, cruel punishment and fear as they asserted and fought for the recognition of basic human rights at a time when the dictatorship demolished the house of democracy in our land,” Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said in a statement.

He said the imposition of martial rule 43 years ago “is probably one of the darkest chapters in the country’s history.”

”From their blood, sweat and tears, our people gathered and rebuilt their willpower and strength to mount wave upon wave of protest movements that culminated in the triumph of the EDSA People Power Revolution in 1986,” Coloma said.

He said the people’s resistance and struggle against martial rule became the foundation for rebuilding democracy in the Philippines that served as a beacon of hope and inspiration for other freedom-loving people, who overcame dictatorship and rebuilt democracy in their land.

”Together with our efforts to ensure sustainable long-term growth, progress and stability that would include the active participation of all Filipinos, it is important to impart to the youth of our land the lessons learned from martial rule and the struggle to restore democracy, as our continuing legacy to all future generations of Filipinos,” Coloma stressed.

Marcos issued Proclamation No. 1081 to put the entire country under martial law, claiming it was the last efforts to solve disorder brought about by increasingly violent student demonstrations and threats of communist insurgency and the Muslim separatist movement.

The imposition of military rule led to the arrest of opposition politicians, including President Benigno Aquino III’s father, the late former Senator Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino Jr.

On Jan. 17, 1981, Marcos issued Proclamation No. 2045 to formally end martial law.

Five years later, Marcos was forced to leave the country because of the popular bloodless 1986 EDSA People’s Power Revolution that followed the snap presidential elections in February of that year.

With the departure of Marcos, President Aquino’s mother -- the late former President Corazon Aquino -- was catapulted to power that led to the restoration of democracy in the country. (PNA)


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