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Nation

Militant groups join 'Million People March' vs pork barrel

Dennis Carcamo - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - Militant group Bayan on Monday joined the thousands of Filipinos who trooped to Rizal Park (formerly Luneta) and called for the scrapping of the so-called pork barrel system.

"The Filipino people have had enough of plunder and impunity, where billions are siphoned to private pockets and no one is held accountable. The people are protesting against a rotten system of patronage politics with zero accountability. The people reject the so-called reformed pork of the Aquino regime. They want nothing less than the total abolition of all forms of pork barrel funds," Bayan chairperson Carol Araullo said.

Araullo said that instead of handing to legislators, the pork barrel funds should be rechanneled to basic social services.

Bayan and its allied groups assembled at the Liwasang Bonifacio before marching to Luneta.

The groups carried  banners with the hashtag #abolishpork, a reference to the online outrage that has now spilled to the streets.

The groups also demanded that the P346.8 billion presidential pork be also scrapped and diverted to direct funding for social services.

"Today is National Heroes Day. We march from the Bonifacio Monument in Liwasan, to the Rizal Monument in Luneta, to the Don  Chino Roces Monument in Mendiola...The people’s protest is directed at (President) Aquino who has chosen to retain pork under a new name, despite the clamor for its abolition,"Bayan secretary general Renato Reyes Jr. said.

Pork-themed placards, visuals and props adorned the rally, with protesters chanting "Makibaka, huwag magbaboy", a reference to a 70’s activist movement.

AQUINO

BAYAN

BONIFACIO MONUMENT

CAROL ARAULLO

CHINO ROCES MONUMENT

LIWASANG BONIFACIO

LUNETA

NATIONAL HEROES DAY

PORK

RENATO REYES JR.

RIZAL MONUMENT

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