Protesters rallied in front of the Philippine Consulate General in Los Angeles in response to Ferdinand 'Bongbong' Marcos Jr.'s apparent landslide victory over Vice President Leni Robredo in the 2022 Philippine elections.
A similar protest was held at the same time at the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco.
The activists accused the Philippine Commission On Elections (Comelec) of being controlled by the Duterte administration. They said Comelec has mishandled the election process through the late delivery of ballots, massive disenfranchisement of voters, and the malfunctioning of vote counting machines.
"It takes money and resources and the ill-gotten wealth from Marcos and Duterte to buy their way through elections to ensure they are able to disenfranchise voters, control the Comelec. Everything that needed to be done to determine an outcome that would be favorable to them," Rhonda Ramiro of Bayan USA claimed.
According to the consulate in San Francisco, voting packets were sent to all 47,711 registered voters in its ten-state jurisdiction two weeks prior to the May 9th deadline.
Meanwhile, supporters of Marcos, who ran on the promise of uniting the Philippines, urged even those who voted against the late dictator's son to join the call for unity. But activists are unwilling and skeptical.
"If they really want unity, then we’ll see Marcos actually making changes and that is not what we saw with his platform. That's not what we’ve seen with his track record. That’s not what we’ve see from the Marcos family," Ramiro argued.
Justher Gutierrez of Malaya NorCal added, "unity doesn't mean historical erasure. And so I think the first step in being able to work together is to make sure we understand the atrocities of martial law, the atrocities that come with having a political dynasty, continued consolidation of power. If we don’t acknowledge that, then it’s going to be very, very difficult to work together."
The activists said they are strongly rejecting a victory for Marcos and his running mate Sara Duterte. They are planning similar protests throughout the week.