On the eve of the 35th anniversary of the 1986 People Power Revolution that toppled a dictatorship, former President Fidel V. Ramos, a key player during the four-day historic bloodless uprising, cited the importance of unity to contain the challenges facing the country.
In his message for the 2021 EDSA People Power celebration, Ramos, now 92, recalled that “the world stood in awe as it witnessed Filipinos united in courage and determination, in selfless offering of life and fortune to restore our democracy, our rights, and our freedom.
“This was our opportunity to make things right, to do things right, for what we hold in hearts as true and just. We were the beacon of hope, the pride of our race, the muse of the community of nations.
“We owe generations after us the true story of EDSA 1986 and bequeath the legacy of the spirit that carried us through those fateful days and beyond.”
Ramos, who will be 93 years old next month, 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 asked: “Are we impassioned and inspired by the spirit of EDSA 1986? Do we go about our lives guided by these ideals? Are we worthy of the risks taken and the sacrifices made by our countrymen?”
The former President also said: “Our nation’s destiny remains uncertain, but her history is evidence that we always succeed in achieving our shared aspirations when we work together.”
The revolution, he said, “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 at the table of the community of nations.”
Ramos has been self-quarantined in his home in Ayala, Alabang since the outbreak of COVID-19 when he sent through e-mail for this year’s People Power anniversary to the news media.
“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,” Ramos said in a message sent to the media Wednesday.
“The 1986 EDSA Revolution remains a resplendent moment for it represents the best of Filipinos. We made history thirty-five years ago today where more than one million Filipinos gathered peacefully to oust a dictatorship through a bloodless revolt,” he said.
“We call it then as we call it now, the People Power Revolution,” Ramos, who is also known as FVR, said.
During the four-day bloodless People Power revolt from Feb. 22 to 25, more than a million Filipinos from all walks of life gathered along the Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (EDSA) in Quezon City, demanding then President Ferdinand E. Marcos, who ruled the country for over 20 years, to step down.
The people stayed along EDSA despite the presence of fully armed soldiers loyal to Marcos.
For four days the over a million people stood their ground when countless of loyalist soldiers defected to the camp of then Defense Minister Juan Ponce Enrile and Gen. Ramos, who was then the chief of the then Philippine Constabulary (PC), now the Philippine National Police (PNP), who held their ground at Camp Crame in Quezon City, ready to confront the government forces loyal to Marcos.
Stream of soldiers defected to the side of the Enrile-Ramos forcing Marcos to flee from Malacanang Palace and fled to Hawaii aboard a plane provided by the United States on Feb. 25, 1986.
The crowd at EDSA and the whole country erupted in euphoria when it was announced that Marcos and his family had fled the country.
Congress then installed Corazon C. Aquino as the new president of the Philippines in place of Marcos.
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