PASAY CITY – An estimated 15,000 revelers gathered in Pasay City in Metro Manila to mark Pride, in an event helmed by the Metro Manila Pride (MMP), which took over Task Force Pride in 2015 to hold commercialized Pride events in these parts of the Philippines.
With only those who have been vaccinated against Covid-19 allowed into the venue, this was the first in-person Pride event of MMP since the onset of Covid-19; last year’s only in-person non-commercial Pride gathering happened in Quezon City, and was a multi-sectoral event.
Themed “Atin ang Kulayaan!”, this year’s event played on the words “kulay” (color) and “kalayaan” (freedom), supposed to highlight the need to unify no matter people’s “colors”, particularly in reclaiming narratives including history amid revisionism. But seemingly belying this call for unification, the gathering was dominated by ,
But for MMP, its call is also timely with the pending taking of office of the new administration of President-elect Ferdinand “Bong-bong” Romualdez Marcos, Jr., the only son of a deposed dictator with the infamous former First Lady Imelda Romualdez Marcos.
With the event held in 2019 joined by over 50,000, the much lower turnout for this year’s gathering may be attributed to various factors – e.g. the number of Pride events held on the same day on various locations in Metro Manila (particularly Quezon City and Marikina City), delays in the planning for this year’s gathering, Covid-19 related limitations, and after-effects of the 2022 elections that saw divisions within the LGBTQIA community due to political colors.