Another violent Aug. 21 marked


Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 06:24:00 08/22/2008

MANILA, Philippines—While marking the assassination of one of its leaders on the same day, members of the Liberal Party (LP) also gathered Thursday to commemorate another bloody event—the Plaza Miranda bombing of 1971.

Led by former Senate President Jovito Salonga, who barely survived the blast that rocked their miting de avance, the LP members wore yellow shirts featuring the likeness of the late Sen. Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. and the legend “Ituloy natin ang laban ni Ninoy” (Let us continue Ninoy’s fight).

“A hundred pieces of shrapnel still in my body, one eye out, one ear no longer hearing. But what we did at Plaza Miranda was historic. It is a symbol of what the people are prepared to do to defend their liberty and democracy,” said Salonga, now 88.

On Aug. 21, 1971, two fragmentation grenades hurled on stage by unidentified men gravely wounded then Senators Salonga, Gerardo Roxas and Sergio Osmeña Jr. and Manila Mayor Ramon Bagatsing.

Salonga was presented a plaque of recognition by Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim for his “extraordinary valorous participation in the democratic processes of the country.” A marker on the bombing was also inaugurated at the plaza in Quiapo where the affair was held.

“Aug. 21, 1971 is historic for our party and our country because since then, the writ of habeas corpus was suspended. A year and a month later, martial law was declared and the country fell under a dictatorship. That’s why we’re here, to mark this memorable day and renew our pledge to never let this happen again,” said LP president Sen. Manuel “Mar” Roxas II.

Asked if his attendance at the event meant he was joining the LP, Lim, who had resigned from the Partido ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) the day before, said it was too early to say.

“I am still in a daze. I was so confused and surprised… for now I will remain an opposition against the present administration. I will have to think hard about that [joining the LP],” he said.

Lim resigned as PMP president on Wednesday after former President Joseph Estrada announced on Tuesday that he had quit.

“If the Liberal Party is welcome in Manila, Mayor Lim is very, very much welcome in the Liberal Party,” said Roxas to cheers from the crowd. Allison W. Lopez, with Edson C. Tandoc Jr.

One Response to “Another violent Aug. 21 marked”

  1. Dee Says:

    I need a reaction/essay for this.

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