History, part 11
The Ferdinand Marcos Regime (1965-1986)
Ferdinand Marcos was elected President by defeating them incumbent President
Diosdado Macapagal who ran for re-election. Macapagal was his former party-
mate with the Liberal Party. Marcos switched to the Nacionalista Party so that he
can be its standard bearer during the presidential elections.
Jose Maria Sison reestablished the Communist Party of the Philippines on
December 27, 1968.
Ferdinand Marcos was reelected president with overwhelming votes. He was the
first president of the present Philippine Republic to win a second term of office.
But his popularity declined rapidly after his reelection because of allegations of
election fraud and widespread graft and corruption.
Gloria Diaz won the Miss Universe contest held in Miami Beach, Florida. The then
18-year old sophomore student from St. Scholastica's College in Manila was the
first ever Filipina to win the prestigious international beauty pageant.
A political proclamation rally of the opposition Liberal party at Plaza Miranda, in
Quiapo, Manila on Agust, 21 1971, was attacked by unknown assailants when two
hand grenades were thrown into the crowd injuring many of the its political leaders
notably Senators Sergio Osmena and Jovito Salonga. In response, President
Marcos suspended the writ of habeas corpus to contain the looming political
disorder and unrest.
The writ of habeas corpus was restored on January 11, 1972.
On September 21, 1972. President Ferdinand Marcos signed Proclamation 1081
declaring the entire country under martial law to "save the Republic" from crime
and violence. Marcos ruled by decree, abolished Congress, and created the semi-
parliament Batasang Pambansa. Many private businesses were taken over by the
government. The press and other media were severely curtailed. Many opposition
leaders and individuals critical of the Marcos administration disappeared,
imprisoned, or went into exile. Among the prominent opposition leaders arrested
were Senators Jovito salonga, Jose Diokno, and Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino, Jr.
Ferdinand Marcos officially lifted martial law but he retained vast power of arrest
and detention. The lifting of martial law was seen as an attempt to appease the
powerful Roman catholic church because of the impending visit of Pope John
The Philippine Constitution of 1973 was amended. A presidential election was
called which was boycotted by the opposition. Marcos ran against a political
unknown retired General Alejo Santos.
Political opposition leader former Senator Benigno "Ninoy" S. Aquino, Jr. was
assassinated at the Manila International Airport (MIA) on August 21, 1983. He was
returning to the Philippines from exile in the United States reportedly to lead the
opposition against the government of President Ferdinand E. Marcos. Ninoy
Aquino's murder inspired the EDSA People's Power revolution that eventually led
to the peaceful overthrow of Ferdinand Marcos from power.
In later years MIA was renamed the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in
honor of the slain opposition leader.
The Philippine Constitution of 1973 was amended for the second time. The first
amendment was done in 1981.
Thirty (30) computer technicians of the Commission of Elections (COMELEC)
staged a dramatic walk-out of their jobs on February 9, 1986. They were reported
protesting an order to tamper with the presidential election returns in favor of
Defense Minister Juan Ponce Enrile and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP)
Vice Chief of Staff General Fidel Ramos defected from the Marcos administration
and led a military mutiny on February 23, 1986. Their forces holed up at Camp
Crame in Quezon City where people gathered along the EDSA Highway near the
camp to protect them from being attacked by pro-administration soldiers.
Unable to quell the popular, but peaceful, people's revolt, President Marcos left
Malacanang Palace and went into exile in Hawaii two days later.
ABS-CBN resumed commercial operations in February 1986 during the height of
the EDSA People's Power revolution.
The 20-year rule of President Marcos ended when the "People Power" movement
in Metro Manila installed Corazon C. Aquino, the widow of slain Senator Benigno
S. Aquino, Jr., as President. Corazon Aquino and Salvador Laurel were sworn into
office on February 25, 1986 after the snap elections.
Aquino's presidency signalled a return to democracy but it was marked by several
coup attempts from a small faction of the military which undermined the political
and economic stability of her administration.