A Malacanang official said on Sunday a group of protesters used their freedom of expression excessively when they resorted to vandalism and clashed on Saturday with law enforcers in front of the residence of President Benigno S. Aquino III in Barangay West Triangle, Quezon City.
The protesters also became unruly toward the end of their protest, injuring 12 personnel of the Philippine National Police (PNP).
”They did not only create violence but actual physical injuries against our law enforcers who were there just to implement the law. That’s why we can say that was excessive use of freedom of expression,” Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Herminio ‘Sonny’ Coloma Jr. said in an interview with Radyo ng Bayan DZRB.
Coloma said Quezon City Police District Senior Superintendent Joel Pagdilao reported that the rallyists had been allowed to hold protest and even given extension but became unruly toward the end of the rally.
”This only showed that they were given enough time to express the issues they wanted to express but before they ended their protest, they started to vandalize, using red paints on the road and even the gate of President Aquino’s neighbor,” Coloma said.
According to reports, protest leader Antonio Flores, secretary general of the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), was arrested and will face charges of serious physical injury and direct assault against persons in authority.
The rallyists were protesting alleged human rights violations and militarization of the countryside. PNA