MANILA –A Filipino group in the United States has manifested its full support for real change in the Philippines as declared by President Rodrigo R. Duterte in the war against illegal drugs, corruption and poverty.
In a press statement e-mailed to PNA on Friday, the newly formed group chaired by Arnedo S. Valera said the US Pinoys for Real Change in the Philippines (USPRCP) held a prayer vigil rally in front of the Philippine Embassy in Washington, D.C., to drum up their support for the Duterte administration.
The USPRCP which is based in the State of Virginia held its own celebration during the 31st anniversary of the EDSA People Power last Feb. 21.
The four-day People Power revolution on Feb. 22-25, 1986 toppled the 20-year strongman rule of then President Ferdinand E. Marcos that enabled the Philippines to regain freedom and democracy.
“The spirit of EDSA should inspire Filipinos overseas that we are integral parts of the on-going change in the Philippines,” Valera said.
“We must remember that EDSA is not, and does not, belong to one political group or color, but to all Filipinos, including Filipinos overseas who fought for or support freedom and democracy. Now is the time for constructive engagement and to contribute to positive change in the Philippines. We should always be inspired by the heroism in EDSA.”
The group’s organizers presented the USPRCP Statement of Support to Philippine President Duterte’s War against Illegal Drugs, Corruption and Poverty to Acting Charge d’Affaires Patrick Chuasoto, who met the participants outside the embassy and promised to promptly transmit the statement to President Duterte.
“We believe that winning the war against the illegal drug trade, and winning the war against the culture of corruption will go a long way towards winning the war against poverty, and vice-versa,” Valera pointed out.
The USPRCP also stressed its support to President Duterte’s thriving economic agenda.
Valera said that out of the “180 countries, the Philippines moved up from 70th place to 58th place in the 2017 Index of Economic Freedom. The annual Index is published by the Heritage Foundation, a leading think tank in Washington, D.C., which noted: ‘Despite the challenging global economic environment, the Philippines has achieved notable economic expansion, driven by the economy’s strong export performance and inflows of remittances that have bolstered private consumption.”
Among those present at the prayer vigil rally were USRPCP Co-Convenors Elizabeth E. Babiera; Dan Jimenez, Philippine Military Academy (PMA) alumnus; Conrad Martinez of The Lord is My Shepherd prayer group; and members of the United Filipino Workers of Metropolitan D.C., led by its president, Clarita Chan.
Babiera read the messages of President Duterte, Defense Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana, and Police Maj. Kimberly Molitas, spokesperson of the Philippine National Police (PNP) National Capital Region.
Duterte, in his EDSA anniversary message, said: “My administration has always believed in the power of the people to chart their own destiny, and establish a government that will put the people’s interests, especially the welfare of the poor and underprivileged sectors, as its topmost priority. More than a mere commemoration, now is the perfect time for all of us to reflect and objectively assess what we have lost and what we have gained as a nation since that historic event.”
In his message, Lorenzana thanked USPRCP for its continued support for President Duterte.
Lorenzana said that with the majority of the Filipino people believing in the programs of President Duterte, the entire military supports him. “President Duterte alone has the experience, has the leadership that is truly dedicated to the nation. Let us not waste this opportunity. Let us fight in a peaceful way those who want to destroy our President,” he said.
On the other hand, Molitas said: “Our prayer is that in the observance of these important days, all Filipinos unite in reflecting on this anniversary’s lessons on our nation. If we want to see that today’s generation of young people are assured of a bright future, let us be a part of the change being implemented by the government.”