By Perfecto T. Raymundo
MANILA, Feb. 25 (PNA) — Former President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III and other officials of the Liberal Party (LP) joined the commemoration of the 31st EDSA People Power at the People Power Monument (PPM) on Saturday.
The former president was acknowledged by the people because this was his first appearance in public for such an event when he stepped down from office on June 30, 2016.
Present in the event were Vice President Leni Robredo, Senators Franklin Drilon, Francisco “Kiko” Pangilinan, Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel, rallyist groups of Akbayan, religious sector and students from different universities with ongoing program at the PPM in EDSA, Quezon City.
Also present were former Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda, Quezon City Rep. Kit Belmonte, Senator Bam Aquino and Fr. Robert Reyes.
Pangilinan stressed that their gathering was not an “anti-Duterte” rally, but rather, the celebration of people power.
On the other hand, the former president scored the statements of some government officials that they have the intention to conduct a destabilization.
Aquino termed such statements as merely “kalokohan”.
“Nag-aalok kami ng tulong tapos magde-destabilization? Kalokohan naman yata yun,” former President Aquino said.
Noel Cabangon and other artists performed during the event.
Meanwhile, several members of the Duterte Youth Movement also conducted their own activity in EDSA.
Because they were different from the rest of the groups, some of the crowd noticed them and shouted on the side of the pro-Duterte groups.
However, they were voluntarily pacified by their colleagues and some other people even offered flowers to the youth group.
The organizers estimated that almost 8,000 people were in the EDSA People Power Monument, aside from the others in nearby areas.
On the other hand, more than 200,000 supporters of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte also gathered at the Quirino Grandstand in Luneta Park, Manila, which was attended by some Cabinet members.