About 500 students from the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM) walked out of their classes to denounce and oppose the Arroyo regime’s proposed Charter Change (ChaCha) through a Constituent Assembly (Con Ass).
Led by Samahang Demokratiko ng Kabataan (SDK), PLM Supreme Student Council (SSC) and Bukluran Student’s Alliance (Bukluran), the protesting students call for genuine systemic change instead of a mere ChaCha.
“Instead of merely changing the Constitution, we propose on changing the entire political, economic, and social system that is run by the trapos, elites and capitalists like Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. We must change it with a government of, for, and by the masses and the workers,” said Alvin Frontreras, student council spokesperson.
Meanwhile, Marco Satiada, Chairman of SDK PLM Chapter, considered issues on term extension and modifications of national patrimony as basis in opposing ChaCha. “Although our present Constitution has some loopholes, changing it is untimely under the Arroyo regime for its purpose is to make the trapos and the elite more powerful, especially since there’s the possibility of Gloria’s term extension and full foreign ownership of businesses and land in our country. Instead of solving the problems of the masses, this ChaCha will only aggravate it.”
Satiada then called on the youth in going out to the streets just like how the youth clamored against the Marcos regime during the First Quarter Storm of 1970. “Now is the time for the youth and students to break the apathy and act immediately. Dancing Gloria’s ChaCha is like dancing on broken glass. We at PLM don’t want to get our feet wounded from it instead, we will march on the streets in unison towards genuine systemic change,” Satiada declared.
The students massed up at 9am inside the PLM campus and immediately marched towards Liwasang Bonifacio. Some members of the PLM Administration, Faculty, and employees likewise joined the said protest march.
The students held their march in preparation for the big anti-ChaCha rally that will happen at 3:00 PM in Makati and for the continuous call against ChaCha, which will be joined by members of SDK from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines.