On World Teachers’ Day, Oct. 5, the Commission on Higher Education-Cordillera Administrative Region (CHED-CAR) held a virtual student congress, where the grandson of the late President Marcos was a speaker. Participants staged an online protest by changing their display names to #NeverAgain, #MarcosMagnanakaw, among others.
CHED organized the two-day student congress to discuss college students’ educational concerns. Among its 11 speakers was Sandro Marcos, who was to speak on “Redefining the Role of Youth in National Building.”
As a protest to Sandro's participation in the event (he reportedly gave a pre-recorded address), participants changed their display names to hashtags that are often used on social media as a resounding call to stop historical revisionism about the two-decade Marcos regime and over 14-year martial law.
Among those who participated in the protest was Twitter user @KuyaErjann, who, in the duration of his stay in the event, changed his display name a few times using #NeverAgain, #DeclareEducCrisisNow and #NeverAgaintoKaliwaDam.
Meanwhile, @BIENsays came to the event with the name “Liliosa Hilao,” one of the first known victims of state-sponsored killings during martial law.
In the CHED's webinar, I decided to rename myself as Liliosa Hilao, a victim of #MarcosNOTaHero's ML in protest for inviting a #MarcosMagnanakaw to give a recorded message. #NeverAgain pic.twitter.com/pAUpHvx1MZ— Banash Daily #LabanLeni2022 (@BIENsays) October 5, 2021
A participant also used “Archimedes Trajano” as display name. Trajano was the student who asked then Kabataang Barangay chairperson Imee Marcos about her father’s involvement in numerous human rights violations during martial law.
Remember Archimedes Trajano who was killed after asking Imee Marcos this question “Must the Kabataang Barangay be headed by the president’s daughter?”— RJ Naguit ? (@docrjnaguit) October 5, 2021
Ito siguro siya kung buhay siya sa panahon ng pandemiya. #NeverAgain https://t.co/vPYbPzQNlM pic.twitter.com/sgGe9m189s
He also asked: “Must the Kabataang Barangay be headed by the president’s daughter?” Weeks later, he was found bloodied and beaten up on the streets of Manila. Though official reports say he got in a fight, witnesses said Trajano was allegedly dragged out of the venue by Imee’s military bodyguards.
Among those who participated in the protest was Akbayan! Youth chairperson RJ Naguit, who tweeted photos in the virtual event where his display name was #NeverAgain.
He tweeted he was virtually raising his hand after the speaker’s pre-recorded message but the moderator was just putting it down. “Lagi binababa yung hand ko, takot sila sa mga nagtatanong?” said Naguit, who was eventually booted out of the event.
“‘Wag na tayong maglokohan. Sandro Marcos is neither a representative of the youth nor has the credibility to talk about nation building,” Naguit tweeted. “The Marcoses has plundered our country’s wealth and killed a generation of heroes.”
He expressed disappointment towards CHED for giving the younger Marcos a platform “whose only interest is to rehabilitate their family’s political power.”
He also urged people to stop the Marcoses from getting back in power. “We must exert all means to prevent a Marcos comeback. Nagawa na natin ito noong 2019, wag na rin natin hahayaan makabalik sa 2022!”
Marcos, who is running for congressman to represent the first district of Ilocos Norte in the 2022 elections, is currently the Public Affairs Officer at the office of House Majority leader and Leyte Rep. Martin Romuladez.
His father, Bongbong Marcos, who sought a vice presidential post in 2016 and lost to Vice President Leni Robredo, announced on Oct. 5 that he is joining the presidential race in the 2022 elections.
Banner and thumbnail photos and screenshots from @docrjnaguit and @BIENsays on Twitter