Forum on Martial Law to be held at HAU

Victims of martial law under former President Ferdinand Marcos will relate their stories and experiences to students and young people in a forum that will be held at Holy Angel University marking the recent 46th anniversary of the proclamation.

Dubbed “Revisiting Martial Law 1972-1986″, the forum is sponsored by the Holy Angel University (HAU) Social Studies Circle and will be held on September 28, 2018, Friday, from 9 am to 11 am at the PGN Auditorium of Holy Angel University in Angeles City.

Speakers at the forum will include senior Angeleños Mindo David, Abel Maglambayan and Wilson Velasco, who were all imprisoned and tortured during Marcos’ martial law while William Aguilar, a former youth activist, will relate his experience of imprisonment and torture by soldiers under convicted Gen. Jovito Palparan.

“We want our fellow students and youth to hear first hand the experiences of victims of martial law in light of recent statements by certain personalities who are painting a rosy picture of what has been called ‘a nightmare in Philippine history’,” Jayson Julaton, HAU Social Studies Circle president, said.

The forum is co-sponsored by the Sigma Kappa Pi Fraternity (SKPF) Pampanga Alumni Chapter and the Sigma Kappa Pi Fraternity and Sigma Delta Pi Sorority of University of the Philippines Diliman Extension Program in Pampanga (UPDEPP) or UP Clark.

On September 21, 1972, ousted former President Marcos signed Proclamation 1081 putting the entire Philippines under martial law to suppress what he claimed to be increasing civil strife and the threat of a communist takeover following a series of at least 18 bombings in Manila. The declaration was made public two days later, on September 23, over a nationwide television broadcast.

Martial law in the Philippines was formally lifted on January 17, 1981, a period comprising 3,040 days of what has been described as the dark history of the Philippines.

However, despite the lifting of martial law, Marcos retained virtually all his powers as dictator as the proclamation marked the beginning of a 14-year period of one-man rule that was ended by the Edsa Revolution in February 1986 that ousted and exiled Marcos.

Ferdinand P. Calma, president of SKPF Pampanga Alumni Chapter, said that many of their members who were student leaders and campus journalists during martial law were imprisoned and some even tortured.

“That is why we welcome this partnership with HAU students to revisit the dark years of martial law to counter the revisionist stories being propagated by certain quarters,” Calma added.

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