Citing safety amid downpour, Otso Diretso cuts short thanksgiving concert at UP

Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 09 2019 03:32 AM | Updated as of May 09 2019 04:04 AM

Chel Diokno snaps a selfie with fellow Otso Diretso candidates during a concert dedicated to volunteers and their supports at UP Diliman on Wednesday, May 8. Handout

MANILA—Otso Diretso senatorial candidates on Wednesday closed their campaign with a rain-drenched thanksgiving concert for volunteers at UP Diliman.

Throngs of Otso Diretso supporters braved the downpour in umbrellas, raincoats, and makeshift covers as they cheered at the slate’s “ThisIs8 Grand Thanksgiving Concert.” The program was cut short, however, as rains started to swamp both the stage and parts of the open-field venue.

The sets of Gracenote, Imago, Brownman Revival, Autotelic and Ebe Dancel were canceled due to “safety reasons,” Third Bagro, chief of staff of Otso Diretso campaign manager Sen. Francis Pangilinan, told ABS-CBN News.

“People were under the rain na for more than an hour,” Bagro said. “We were concerned with the crowd na din and safety reasons na din kasi may mga nadudulas na din [sa field] so kung itutuloy pa baka hindi na safe."

The bands were still willing to come and perform, but the place was already swamped, “ThisIs8” talent coordinator Froi Raymundo said in a separate interview.

“'Yung bahay naman nung isang artist baha na so they couldn’t come,” he said.

Original Pinoy music (OPM) bands and icons who performed included Paraluman, Better Days, Janna Garcia, True Faith, Bayang Barrios, Color it Red with Cookie Chua, Bituin Escalante as well as Noel Cabangon and Frankie Pangilinan.

The thanksgiving concert ended with Room for Cielo.

Before the show's abrupt end, Otso Diretso candidate Erin Tañada expressed concern about holding the program amid the downpour.

“Ang concern natin huwag na masyado mahaba 'yung programa,” Tañada told ABS-CBN News.

“I hope kino-consider ‘yan ng mga organizers ngayon dahil kailangan pa natin ng energy for the remaining 5 days,” he said, noting that most of the audience were campaign volunteers.

Senatorial aspirant Romulo Macalintal said the bad weather was a test on the loyalty of the slate’s supporters.

“Ako ay tuwang-tuwa ngayon dahil despite the rain, nako talagang punong-puno pa rin ng tao at hindi sila umaalis,” Macalintal said before he was ushered onstage.

“Iyan ay isang palatandaan na ang taong bayan ay talagang susuporta sa amin.”