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With the dictator’s son now running the country, Filipinos mark 1986 revolt

Updated: Feb 27, 2023

Filipinos celebrate the People Power movement at the historic EDSA monument on Feb. 25, 2023. Photo by Jinky Jorgio

By Jinky Jorgio

Manila—Monique Brodith was born in 1990, four years after the EDSA revolution happened. Despite having zero memory of the people power movement that toppled the Marcos dictatorship on Feb. 25, 1986, Brodith joined the 37th anniversary of the People Power Revolution.

This year's commemoration of the army-backed civilian revolution posed an awkward situation for a divided population now being governed by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the son and namesake of the dictator ousted from his 20-year regime.

Marcos' election is feared is to result in an eventual historical revision and distortion aggressively propagated by his supporters on social media.

But those who were part of history won't let it fade away from the Filipinos' collective memory.

Brodith's mother, Cris, shared with her what she did during the EDSA revolution, narrating the overwhelming experiences of people from all walks of life who came together to fight for freedom and the truth.

Brodith said her mother's story made her more curious about the movement. The history she learned from school gave her a more picturesque interpretation of what her family shared with her.

“I also saw news footage and stories shared by others, giving me an exciting revelation of the revolution,” she said. She may not have witnessed EDSA revolution but she said she personally feels its spirit.

She wants to see the Philippines gain progress like the neighboring Asian countries. Sadly, she said, the country's progress is stalled by wayward leaders.


Cris Brodith, for her part, said she was still in her 20s when the EDSA Revolution happened. She was both excited and nervous when she saw people trooping to EDSA, where some armored vehicles were being deployed. “I went alone and joined other people. I was part of those women, mostly nuns, giving flowers to soldiers," she said.

The historic event was hailed as "an act of divine intervention."

Such an experience was life-changing for her. “People from all walks of life came. An ice cream vendor was giving away free ice cream. We tried to pay him but he declined. Water and food were being distributed to everybody for free,” Cris Brodith said.

She said she was proud of being part of a movement that fought for the nation's freedom. She shared such pride with her daughter and let her join the Feb. 25 celebrations.


About 1,400 pro-democracy demonstrators, some waving Philippine flags and holding placards that read “Never forget,” marked the celebration along the main EDSA highway in metropolitan Manila.

Marcos Jr. issued a reluctant statement, calling for reconciliation, skipping to refer to the event as a democratic milestone, as his predecessors had done.

But 37 years since the revolution, Cris Brodith said good governance and transparency seemingly remain elusive, with the old breed of good leaders and statemen now becoming scarcer. “We are not against the government, we just want good governance,” she said.

Over the past year, corruption has remained rampant. The religious population continues to resort to prayers.

“I am still praying and hoping of miracles. Nothing is impossible with God’s will,” Cris Brodith said

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