Typhoon Yolanda survivors and farmers are in Manila for a series of protest until Dec. 10.
MANILA – The first batch of a protest caravan, this time from the Visayas, arrived in Manila today, Nov. 28, to bring various demands to President Duterte, primarily the rehabilitation of Typhoon Yolanda victims.
Dubbed the Tindog Visayas-Lakbayan laban sa Kagutuman at Militarisasyon (Stand Visayas- people’s caravan against hunger and militarization), the caravan is led by People’s Surge, the progressive group formed by survivors of Typhoon Haiyan in 2013. The group has decried the continuing government neglect of typhoon victims, thousands of whom remain in temporary shelters, or have yet to receive aid for rehabilitation.
The protest caravan also denounced the militarization of communities under the continued implementation of Oplan Bayanihan, the counterinsurgency program of Duterte’s predecessor, President Aquino.
The Lakbayan delegates met up with Metro Manila-based progressives at the Bonifacio Shrine near Manila City Hall, where they marched towards Mendiola Bridge, near the Office of the President in Malacañang Palace.
The caravan were later welcomed by student activists at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines in Sta. Mesa, Manila, where they were to stay until the culmination of their series of mass actions on Dec. 10, International Human Rights Day. More delegates from the Visayas are set to arrive next week.