Cardinal addresses Manila protest march against corruption

Pork barrel protest

The Archbishop of Manila, Cardinal Luis Tagle, called on 'everyone to see, listen to and love the poor' as he addressed a large protest in Manila yesterday against government corruption, reports Ucanews.

Tens of thousands of people marched against corruption in central Manila in the largest protest against President Benigno Aquino's administration since he came to power three years ago.

Dubbed the Million People March, the rally to Luneta Park in Manila’s old quarter was a protest at the Philippines notorious 'pork barrel' fund. The estimated 80,000 people at the march carried placards with 'abolish pork barrel; slogans calling for the government to end the development funds handed out to Filipino lawmakers blamed for rampant corruption in one of a number of rallies held across the Philippines.

Activist priest Robert Reyes challenged government leaders to resign. 'To our [legislators], instead of trying to convince us with all sorts of explanations, ask yourselves: are you still capable of cleansing yourselves?'

Some 200 million pesos (US$4.5 million) is allocated to each of the country’s 24 senators and 70 million pesos to 294 lower house lawmakers, supposedly for development projects in their constituencies.

But a series of recent scandals and a probe by the government’s audit commission revealed missing funds, including some that were diverted to private bank accounts with less than 20 percent of monies found to have been used as declared.

FULL STORY Cardinal addresses Manila protest march against corruption (Ucanews)

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