Filipino musicians react to Bongbong Marcos’ impending landslide win in Philippines presidential election

Filipino musicians who have supported competing candidate Leni Robredo, from The Itchyworms to Zild Benitez to Kiana V, have aired their dismay and anger on social media

Filipino musicians have shared their thoughts on the status of the national elections held yesterday (May 9), which Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is poised to win in a landslide.

During the campaign season, a slew of Filipino musicians have expressed their support for competing candidate and current Vice President Leni Robredo. Artists who have appeared at and performed in her campaign rallies include Ely Buendia, Nadine Lustre, Ebe Dancel, Ben&Ben, Rivermaya, Gloc-9, Juan Karlos, Moira dela Torre, Sam Concepcion, Noel Cabangon and more.

Others have released music in support of her campaign with running partner Kiko Pangilinan, like FlipMusic (‘Kay Leni Tayo‘), Nica del Rosario (‘Rosas‘) and Gab Valenciano (‘Ang Presidente Bise Presidente‘). Former Eraserheads frontman Buendia also re-released his 2021 song ‘Metro’ in support of Robredo.

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On the flipside, artists who have thrown their support behind BongBong Marcos – the son of the infamous former president Ferdinand Marcos – include Silent Sanctuary, Hale, Toni Gonzaga and Andrew E, who have all performed at events for Marcos and running partner Sara Duterte.

leni robredo
Presidential candidate, Vice President Leni Robredo. Credit: Lauren DeCicca/Getty Images)

A Marcos win is likely: Current vote counts have put Marcos at 30million votes versus Robredo’s 14million, according to the partial and unofficial tally of the Commission on Elections (Comelec), with 95 per cent of the votes counted.

On Tuesday, groups staged a protest at the Comelec headquarters against the “unjust” polling process, following reports on Monday of voting irregularities, such as high numbers of broken vote counting machines in precincts nationwide, malfunctioning SD cards and allegations of vote buying.

Some Filipino artists have taken to social media to share their anger and dismay over Marcos’ impending win. Amid quips on social media of Filipinos leaving the country for a life abroad should Marcos be elected, IV Of Spades member Zild Benitez tweeted last night to over 200,000 likes and 60,000 shares: “No one will leave the Philippines; we’ll meet on the streets”.

His bandmate, guitarist Blaster Silonga, replied to his tweet with “Kitakits” – “See you.”

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In a tweet that was shared over 16,000 times, R&B singer Kiana V aired her frustration with the “millions” who voted against Robredo and Pangilinan, whom she called “two incorruptible public servants with so much love for our country, fighting fo justice, for jobs, for our farmers, for transparency in the government”.

The Itchyworms voiced a similar sentiment by quoting some lines from the Eraserheads’ song ‘Para Sa Masa’: “I tried to raise you up / But you won’t take my hand“.

Some artists chose to use their platforms to encourage their followers not to lose hope. Yesterday afternoon, Ely Buendia shared an inspirational quote by Mahatma Gandhi:

Nadine Lustre shared to her Instagram story a graphic that read “The fight does not end tonight” while Ben&Ben’s Agnes Reoma tweeted, “The truth will prevail. Trust”. Pop band Autotelic urged the public to continue to stand for what is right:

Nica Del Rosario shared brand-new lyrics she wrote for the pre-chorus of her Robredo song ‘Rosas’: “Don’t regret / We did not lose / Stay strong / Even when there’s darkness / Nothing will put out the light in our hearts / Eyes opened with hope, with love / We won’t close our eyes again“.

According to the Inquirer, the Philippines Congress has begun preparations for the official canvassing of votes, and Senate President Vicente Sotto III and Speaker Lord Allan Jay Velasco have revealed that they’re eyeing May 27 or 28 to declare the new president and vice president.

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