Davao Today

DAVAO CITY ( Yellow ribbons hung in tricycles, jeepneys and private cars; gigantic yellow cloths rolled out in schools, malls and buildings on the day that former President Corazon Aquino was buried.

While members of the Davaos Yellow Friday Movement brought flowers and sang church hymns in a mass at the Ateneo de Davao University chapel, members of the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) across the street waved yellow cartolinas , singing Bayan Ko with clenched fists and urging onlookers to fight ongoing moves by the Arroyo administration to amend the Charter.

The Yellow Friday Movement was a group of businessmen, religious and professionals who fought it out against the Marcos dictatorship.

People somehow needed to show they cherish democracy, especially now when the vestiges of the dictatorship seem to be back, said Franchie Buhayan, a leader of the urban poor group Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap (Kadamay).

Peoples march during the Presidents state of the nation address. Since Marcos time, Davao city has been the site of paralyzing street protests.

Buhayan said his group was thankful that Cory, even in death, helped restore the dignity of going to the streets to express collective disgust.

The crowd that joined the funeral march for the late President Aquino in Manila refuted the Arroyo governments claim that Filipinos are tired of people power.

Davao City was the site of paralysing Welgang Bayan (Peoples Strikes) in the 80s.
Based on the estimated 17,000 people who marched the streets in protest during the state of the nation address (Sona) of President Gloria Arroyo in July, Davao city continues to be so despite countless attempts to discredit this form of democratic exercise.

Davao Doctors hospital pay tribute to Cory.

Buhayan said people will continue to be on the streets to resist their conditions, made worse by bad governance, corruption, repression of peoples right, extrajudicial killings and human rights violations, trademarks of the Marcos dictatorship in the 80s.
On the day Cory was buried, Davao activists saw it fitting to pay tribute by going out to the streets.

Leonardo Ortilano, 60, a jeepney driver parked his jeepney, letting go of the few pesos he could have earned, just to attend the street program.

Ortilano said it pays to remember the woman who brought home the idea that no dictator will go unopposed.

For Ortilano, Cory became the symbol through which people recognized their strength to fight the evils of Martial Law.

Many were killed during Martial Law. Now, its like its Marcos days once again. Corruption like the ZTE scandal and killings, are happening all over again. Arroyo is just good at hiding it, Ortilano said.

Yellow ribbons tied onto street posts to mark Corys passing.

Ortilano believes that Cory became the President because she fought corruption. People should wake up. We should choose leaders who have integrity and leaders who dont cheat people, he said.

Willy Mosqueda, a resident of Barangay Maa said the turnout of people on the streets especially in Manila, should be a wake-up call to the present administration. People are ready to go to the streets once more, if they feel that their democracy is threatened. Arroyo should be afraid. People are hungry for change. (Cheryll D. Fiel/

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