'EDSA Revolution is not over': Ramos says Filipinos must 'work' to enjoy freedom, rights

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 25 2021 12:45 PM | Updated as of Feb 25 2021 12:58 PM

Former president Fidel V. Ramos, February 15, 2017. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA - Former President Fidel V. Ramos on Thursday said the spirit of the EDSA People Power revolution "is not over" 35 years after it toppled authoritarian rule in the Philippines.

Filipinos have to continuously "work" to "enjoy the freedoms and rights embodied in our Constitution," said Ramos, who was a key personality in the 1986 bloodless revolt that ousted dictator Ferdinand Marcos.

"The revolution is not over and the work remains unfinished until every Filipino enjoys the freedoms and rights embodied in our Constitution, our democracy secure, and we regain our seat in the community of nations," Ramos said in a statement made public on the 35th Anniversary of the EDSA People Power.

"Our nation's destiny remains uncertain, but her history is evidence that we always succeed in achieving our shared aspirations when we work together," he added.

The former president did not elaborate on why some Filipinos have yet to enjoy their freedoms and why he thought the Philippines has already lost its place as Asia's "beacon of hope, the pride of our race, the muse of the community of nations."

"This [EDSA Revolution] was our opportunity to make things right, to do things right, for what we hold in our hearts is true and just," Ramos said.

"The challenge we face now is to keep ablaze the flame of nationalism and continue to embody the unparalleled spirit of the People Power Revolution," he added.

Ramos - a former military general - left Marcos and sided with Corazon Aquino, who was catapulted to the presidency after the assassination of her husband, opposition senator Benigno Aquino Jr.

The military general eventually won as president and succeeded Mrs. Aquino in 1992.

In 2017, Ramos - who was known as one of President Rodrigo Duterte's mentors - urged the current administration to establish an EDSA Learning Center at the back of the People Power Monument to educate young Filipinos about the relevance of the historic peaceful revolution.

The former president's suggestion did not materialize after Duterte - whose 2016 presidential campaign was backed by the Marcos family - began downscaling the annual commemoration of EDSA People Power.

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