Metro Manila · Filipinos show their anger over Pork Barrel scam
Thousands of Filipinos took to the streets on Monday, August 26, to protest against the misuse of tax money and for the abolition of the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), better known as 'Pork Barrel Fund'.
The PDAF is a fund granted to each congressman and -woman for development projects, mainly on the local level. In July 2013, it was exposed that some 10 billion Pesos of the fund were misused in the last ten years on ghost projects and fake NGOs, ending up in private pockets of politicians, their families and business partners.
According to the police, around 75,000 Filipinos joined the 'Million People March' on National Heroes Day, a public holiday, to show their outrage over the so called 'Pork Barrel Scam'. Organizers estimated that much more than a 100,000 people gathered at Rizal Park, Manila City, among them members of various civic organizations, political and religious groups, as well as students and workers, tax payers and celebrities.
Smaller protests also took place in many other Philippine cities. Some overseas Filipino communities stated protests as well, such as in Los Angeles, Hong Kong, and Geneva. Online activists calling themselves 'Anonymous Philippines' hacked at least 30 government websites since Sunday evening to protest against the widespread corruption.
Official investigations on the Pork Barrel scam are still ongoing. The public pressure has already made an impact ahead of the Million People March, leading President Benigno Aquino III to announce that he is going to scrap the PDAF altogether.