Filipinos from all corners of Metro Manila converged along the People Power Monument along EDSA in Quezon City on Friday to commemorate the 25th year anniversary of the EDSA People Power revolution that ended 21-year dictatorship rule in the country.
Most of those that have gathered in this historic site were clad in yellow—the symbolic color used during the 1986 peaceful protest which was led by the late President Corazon "Cory" Conjuangco Aquino, mother of current Philippine President Benigno "NoyNoy" Aquino III.
The celebration, which began with a flag-raising ceremony at 7:00 am local time, was led by President NoyNoy Aquino. This was joined by the blowing of the horns of all of the ships of the Philippine Coast Guard that were docked in the country's ports and harbors.
He also led the unveiling of a marker at the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) Building along EDSA where his mother made her first speech to the Filipino people during the revolution.
The section of EDSA starting from Ortigas Avenue to Boni Serrano Avenue has been closed off by security personnel comprising of members from the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and local police officers. Already, the closed out area has been filled by stalls selling everything from souvenirs to food and water.
Classes have been called off in observance of the silver anniversary of the People Power Revolution, giving students the opportunity to relive the events that they have, until now, learned through textbooks and the stories of their elders.
Former President Fidel V. Ramos and Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile will be re-enacting their historic march out from the Gate 2 of Camp Aguinaldo at 3:00pm. They will be accompanied by police personnel, members of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines, and around 2,000 soldiers.
Meanwhile, celebrities expressed their insights and shared their experiences of the days leading up to what is considered to be the country's most historic event.
"There was a 12 midnight to 4:00 am curfew," singer-composer Jim Paredes—who penned the song "Handog ng Pilipino sa Mundo," which is regarded as the anthem of the revolution—shared. "Kung mahuli ka, you were brought to Camp Crame to cut grass till 12NN (If you were caught, you were brought to Camp Crame to cut grass till 12NN)."
Film and TV director Jose Javier Reyes posted on Twitter how they stood "on the rooftop of the ABS-CBN Building in tears singing Bayan Ko upon learning that the Marcoses have left."
Leaders of different countries have extended their congratulations to the Filipino in the form of separate statements sent to the Aquino government. One was German President Christian Wulff who pointed to the EDSA People Power revolution as the source of inspiration for the Germans to take a stand for peace and freedom, which culminated with the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Over 2 million Filipino civilians, politicians, military personnel and religious figures—including then Archbishop Jaime Cardinal Sin—took to Epifanio delos Santos Avenue, commonly referred to as EDSA. The protests were fueled by a resistance and opposition of years of corrupt governance of then-President Ferdinand Marcos, heightened by the assassination of Senator Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino at the Manila International Airport in 1983 upon his return from exile in the United States. The bloodless revolution resulted to the ousting of President Marcos from dictatorship, and being exiled in Hawaii where he died three years later.