Sara retracts social media post praising EDSA revolt

Neil Jayson Servallos - The Philippine Star
Sara retracts social media post praising EDSA revolt
Vice President Sara Duterte delivers a speech during the Basic Education Report 2024 at a hotel in Pasay City on January 25, 2024.
STAR / KJ Rosales

MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Sara Duterte appears to have retracted her Feb. 25 statement on the 38th anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution, that called on the people to always remember the sacrifices of the Filipinos who united to topple the dictatorship of President Marcos’ father.

Duterte said despite the supposed gaffe last Sunday, she defers to her 2017 statement on EDSA, a portion of which reads: “I find it hard to understand why this bloodless revolution has become the standard definition of freedom for our country and this standard is forced down our throats by a certain group of individuals who think they are better than everyone else.”

The statement in 2017 was in an open letter she addressed to Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas, who criticized how then-president Rodrigo Duterte “single-handedly defaced” the memory of the popular uprising.

“What I said in 2017 regarding the Feb. 25 EDSA anniversary has never changed. My position remains the same today. I did not intend to issue a statement this year as I did not the previous year. Because of this, I removed the EDSA anniversary post from my social media page. I hope this will put the matter to rest,” Duterte said in a statement issued yesterday.

In the now deleted post, which is still up on news sites and across social media, Duterte was quoted as urging Filipinos to never forget the sacrifices of “the brave souls” who united in the fight for democracy and freedom during EDSA – a drastic change in tone compared to her previous statements on People Power anniversaries.

“On this day, we commemorate the brave souls who stood united on the streets of Edsa, fighting for democracy and freedom,” read the deleted statement, which was posted on Duterte’s social media pages.

“Their courage and determination paved the way for a better Philippines, and their sacrifices will never be forgotten. As we celebrate this momentous occasion, let us remember the lessons of Edsa – the power of unity, the strength of the Filipino spirit, and the importance of standing up for what is right,” it added.

The statement added that Filipinos must build a nation “where justice, peace and prosperity prevail, where every voice is heard and every dream is achievable.”

“Together, we can overcome any challenge and create a brighter tomorrow for the generations to come. Happy Edsa anniversary to all Filipinos, may we continue to uphold the spirit of Edsa in all that we do,” it added.

Duterte also acknowledged the 38th anniversary of the EDSA Revolution as a “momentous occasion” for Filipinos. The Office of the Vice President has yet to disclose the circumstances that led to the issuance of the statement and its eventual deletion.

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