With community quarantines in place in the country, local protests are temporarily banned. Which is why, in light of several controversies hounding the Philippines, Filipinos abroad are doing the protests on behalf of activists and human rights advocates in the country.
Enzo Manzano, the son of veteran actor Edu Manzano, is one of them. The young lad proved that you can use your own voice to ignite change no matter where you are when he decided to held a solo protest in light of the controversial Anti-Terrorism Bill. (Read: What Will Happen If The Anti-Terrorism Bill Gets Signed Into Law?)
Over the weekend, Enzo posted a series of photos of himself holding up placards and peacefully protesting alone in front of the United Nations headquarters in New York City. His placard reads, “Duterte & the Philippine gov’t are taking away my people’s basic rights! Filipinos can’t protest so I hope the world can see us instead.”
According to Enzo, it took him three days to decide whether to pursue the solo protest or not, but his will and compassion towards his countrymen made him do it.
“I realized lengthy Facebook posts don’t do the trick… also it only makes me more angry (sic) whenever news of our government comes out in the Philippines. The feeling of being useless doesn’t help either – whether it’s because I’m in New York or the government keeps coming up with ways to silence us back home,” Enzo said. (Read: Anti-Terror Bill: Beauty Queens Urge Filipinos to Speak up, Be Informed)
“I was never the type to protest but at this point with all that the Philippine government is doing, it’s either you’re fighting to keep your country alive or not,” he continued. “Sucks to hear that my fellow Filipinos can’t protest back home… I hope my lone protest can make up for that. At least a little bit!”
Today, I chose to stand outside the United Nations HQ for 3 hours (I have a recorded live video, on my timeline, showing…Posted by Enzo Manzano on Wednesday, June 17, 2020
Last Friday, Enzo held another solo protest in front of the Consulate General of the Philippines. And this time, his placards read “The Philippine government is destroying my country’s democracy! Hear us now (before it’s too late),” and another that said, “To Filipinos overseas: we may have left our country… but let’s not abandon our people.”
He explained that his activism is not for himself but for his fellowmen in the Philippines. “I am doing this for each and every one of you. It hurts to be away from our country and to see this happen. Things have dramatically changed since I’ve left and it’s only been 2 1/2 years so far,” he said. (Read: Church Leaders Unite To Take Stand Against Anti-Terrorism Law)
“I can’t stand the thought of what our home is turning into,” he continues. “There are multiple efforts to silence and scare you, but I hope we can make my protests loud enough for the world to see and hear!”