Timeline of the People Power Revolution

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People Power Revolution
DateFebruary 22–25, 1986
LocationQuezon City, Philippines
Also known asEDSA Revolution
Yellow Revolution
OutcomeFall of Marcos regime (1965-86); start of Fifth Republic

The People Power Revolution (also known as the EDSA Revolution and the Philippine Revolution of 1986) was a series of popular demonstrations in the Philippines that began in 1983 and culminated in 1986. The methods used amounted to a sustained campaign of civil resistance against regime violence and electoral fraud. This case of nonviolent revolution led to the toppling of President Ferdinand Marcos and the restoration of the country's democracy.




  • May 14 - Elections for the Batasang Pambansa (parliament) are held. The United Nationalist Democratic Organization (UNIDO) and the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-LABAN) coalition decide to take part. Aquino's widow, Corazón, throws her support behind the opposition candidates, who surprise Marcos by winning 56 seats out of the 183 amidst familiar allegations of fraud.[1]
  • October 24 - The Agrava Board, a fact-finding commission tasked with investigating the Aquino assassination, concludes that there was a military conspiracy behind the killing and implicates Armed Forces Chief of Staff, Gen. Fabián Ver.[1]


  • February 22 - General Ver, 24 soldiers, and one civilian stand trial before the Sandiganbayan for the Aquino murder. Ver takes a leave of absence as Armed Forces Chief of Staff.[1]
  • August - Opposition MPs file a motion for impeachment against Marcos in the Batasan, citing culpable violation of the Constitution and "hidden wealth." The majority party squelches the motion.[1]
  • November 3 - Marcos suddenly announces the holding of snap elections after alleged prodding from the United States.
  • December 2 - General Ver and all his co-accused are acquitted by the Sandiganbayan. Marcos reinstates him as Chief of Staff amid widespread protest.[1]
  • December 3 - Corazon Aquino declares her candidacy for President. Salvador Laurel, who earlier has wanted to run for the same position, agrees to be her running mate.[1]
  • December 5 - The Opposition makes a formal announcement of the Aquino-Laurel tandem for the snap elections.[1]


February 7[edit]

  • Attempts of fraud, vote-buying, intimidation, and violence are reported and election returns are tampered with. The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) tally board shows Marcos leading while the National Citizen's Movement for the Free Elections (NAMFREL) consistently shows Cory Aquino ahead by a comfortable margin.[1]

February 9[edit]

February 11[edit]

  • Oppositionist ex-Governor Evelio Javier of Antique is murdered in front of the provincial capitol where canvassing is being held. Primary suspects are the bodyguards of the local KBL leader.

February 13[edit]

February 15[edit]

  • The Batasang Pambansa declared President Ferdinand Marcos and his running mate Arturo Tolentino as the winners of the February 7 Snap Elections.[2]

February 16[edit]

  • Around two million people gathered at the Quirino Grandstand in Luneta Park, Manila to protest the proclamation of Marcos and Tolentino as winners of the February 7 Snap Elections. Opposition leader and UNIDO presidential candidate Corazon Aquino called for nationwide civil disobedience and a boycott of all Marcos crony-owned companies in protest of the proclamation.[3]

February 22[edit]

  • 2:00 AM
  • 3:00 AM
    • The final meeting at the Defense Minister's home is concluded. Lt. Col. Honasan and Kapunan begin their recoinnaisance of Malacañang. To their dismay, they discover battle-hardened Marines stationed at their main point of attack.
  • 6:30 AM
  • 9:00 AM
    • Fabian Ver sends Col. Rolando Abadilla to Col. Honasan to inform the latter that their plans have been made known already and that RAM should not make any rash decisions.
  • 10:00 AM
    • Lt. Col. Honasan phones Kapunan and informs him that they are not going to abort the mission, but to simply "freeze" the operation for the next 24 hours.
    • Honasan reviews the situation and assesses the prepositioning of the troops from his office in GHQAFP Camp Aguinaldo
    • Cory Aquino leaves for Cebu to continue the Civil Disobedience Campaign.
  • 12:00 NN
    • Navy Capt. Rex Robles was assigned to act as a liaison with the diplomatic community in case the RAM officers will be arrested, and tell the world of their story.
    • U.S. Amb. Stephen Bosworth along with Philip Habib, Pres. Ronald Reagan's personal envoy to Marcos, visit the Palace for a meeting with the President. They discuss the recent elections and the political situation. The U.S. envoys call Marcos to retire Ver.
  • 12:45 PM
    • While Marcos was having his meeting with the U.S. envoys, Capt. Ricardo Morales, one of Imelda Marcos' close-in security and who is a mole of RAM in the PSG, reconnoiters the defenses of the Palace grounds, and took the initiative to withdraw some firearms from the PSG armory. He is arrested and is brought to the office of the Aide-de-camp for interrogation.
  • 1:45 PM
    • As the meeting came to a close, barely has Amb. Bosworth left the room, Gen. Ver storms into the Presidential study to convey the recent arrest of four officers in the PSG who are found to be members of RAM.
    • Philip Habib confides as he leaves Malacañang, that "Cory won the election and deserves our support. Marcos is finished, and we ought to offer him asylum in the United States."[4]
  • 2:00 PM
    • With their plans discovered, Enrile and the RAM officers, had to change their direction. They decided that they need to draw the public support if they are going to storm this crisis out.
  • 2:15 PM
    • Cory in the rally in Cebu calls for the boycott of Marcos crony-owned business.
  • 3:45 PM
    • Enrile gets through to Cardinal Sin and seeks his moral and active support, as the former felt that he will not survive the day.
  • 4:30 PM
    • The first military region to go to the rebel side was Regional Unified Command No. 8, which included troops in Mrs. Marcos's own province, Leyte, led by commander, Brig. Gen. Salvador Mison who was in Camp Aguinaldo.
  • 5:30 PM
    • Pres. Marcos first response to the mutiny was to call his family to Malacañang.
  • 6:30 PM
    • Malacañang receives a "report" that Ramos and Enrile were "officially withdrawing their support" of the Marcos administration.
  • 6:45 PM
    • Enrile and Ramos, surrounded by their staff and guards hold a press conference at the Social Hall of the GHQAFP, and make the official announcement of their withdrawal of support of the Marcos administration.
    • Enrile states in his opening that "We are going to die here fighting."[5]
    • Ramos states "There has become an elite Armed Forces of the Philippines that no longer represents the rank and officers' corps of the Armed Forces. ...The President of 1986 is not the President to whom we dedicated our service. it is clear that he no longer is the able and capable commander-in-chief that we count upon. ... He has put his personal family interest above the interest of the people. We do not consider President Marcos as now being a duly constituted authority."[6]
    • Enrile adds "I cannot in my conscience recognize the President as the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces and I am appealing to the other members of the Cabinet to heed the will of the people expressed during the last elections. Because in my own region, I know that we cheated in the elections to the extent of 350,000 votes. ... No, I will not serve under Mrs. Aquino even if she is installed as a president. ... Our loyalty is to the Constitution and the country. ... You are welcome to join us. We have no food..."[7]
    • Ramos closes "I am not even acting Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces. I think that when he made that announcement to you and to the whole world last Sunday, he was just fooling us, and he was fooling the entire world because he flip-flopped so many times already. ... I would like to appeal to the fair and to the dedicated and people-oriented members of the AFP and the INP to join us in this crusade for better government."[7]
  • 7:00 PM
  • Approximately 7:00 PM
    • Cory receives the news of the withdrawal of support by Enrile and Ramos. She calls Manila to verify the report.
  • 8:15 PM
  • 8:30 PM
    • Cardinal Jaime Sin goes on air and calls the people to "Please, do not be alarmed, stay home."
  • 8:45 PM
    • The rebel group was taken aback by the Cardinal's announcement and calls him to clarify their request. They asked him to send the people to the camps.
  • 9:00 PM
    • Cardinal Sin goes on air once more and says "Leave your homes now ...I ask you to support Mr. Enrile and Gen. Ramos, give them food if you like, they are our friends."
    • Inquirer co-chairman Betty Go-Belmonte telephoned Member of Parliament Cecilia Munoz Palma. MP Palma immediately made a call to Radio Veritas and was one of the first opposition leaders to express support for the revolution.[8]
  • 9:30 PM
    • Butz Aquino with the August Twenty-One Movement ATOM Executive Committee deliberate on whether to support Enrile and Ramos. The Executive Committee wants to wait on Cory Aquino for instructions. Butz Aquino finally decided to head to Camp Aguinaldo to support the rebels.
    • Cory Aquino meanwhile is also deciding on what actions to take after receiving the call from ATOM. She requests to speak with Enrile first.
    • Col. Antonio Sotelo, Commander of the 15th Strike Wing, received a call at his Villamor Air Base office from Col. Hector Tarrazona, who was also a member of RAM, asking the Commander whether he is with them. Col. Sotelo confirms that he supports RAM, and orders his Squadron Commanders to arm their attack helicopters.

February 23[edit]

  • Early morning: People supported the uprising of Enrile and Ramos and they expressed support for Corazon Aquino as the real new president. They began to grow by the thousands.
  • 6:00 am: ATOM leadership and members proceed to EDSA and the military camps after a brief meeting in Cubao district.
  • 7:30 am: Radio Veritas restarts broadcasts from a backup transmitter as government forces damage the main one in Barangay Dakila, Malolos, Bulacan, plans are made to move operations in Manila.
  • 10:00am: Soldiers from the Philippine Army and the Philippine Marine Corps from Fort Bonifacio and other camps began to be deployed in opposition to the rebel forces. Mounted on M35 carrier trucks, LVT-5s, M113s and AIFVs and V150s, they were, that very afternoon, stopped by the massive crowd, nuns and clergy at the front.
  • 3:00pm: a PMC armored contingent halts in full view of the crowd along Ortigas Avenue in the Ortigas CBD, Pasig. They would later pull back. Radio Veritas had earlier learned of their planned attack on the camps.
  • 3:10pm: Corazon Aquino arrives in Manila from Cebu
  • 11:00pm: As Radio Veritas signs off,due to difficulties in elecrtricity,June Keithley and station staff takeover the DZRJ radio headquarters in Santa Mesa, Manila, along Ramon Magsaysay Boulevard, planning to restart transmissions at midnight

February 24[edit]

  • 12:00mn: Radio Veritas broadcasts from its new, secret location as "Radio Bandido" (Outlaw radio) from the DZRJ station building
  • 5:30am: First teargas attack on the people by personnel of the Philippine Marines along Santolan Road.
  • 8:30am: Ramos does his famous jump on the PC-INP headquarters in Camp Crame, in full view of the people and the media
  • 11:00am
    • as President Marcos makes another TV appearance, MBS Channel 4 is suddenly taken over by reformist soldiers of the AFP and then signs off as its studios and facilities at the ABS-CBN Broadcasting Center are captured
  • 1:00pm
    • Channel 4 restarts transmissions as People's Television with ex-ABS-CBN technicians supervising, within minutes Radio Veritas moves into the complex restarting transmissions
  • 4:30pm
    • The 15th Strike Wing and several of their helicopter crews defect to the people and the Enrile-Ramos camp upon landing in Camp Crame, much to their delight. It would later turn out that Col. Sotero is a RAM supporter

February 25[edit]

  • 8:45am:
    • Rebel soldiers advance towards the Broadcast City complex with hundreds of people with them, accompanied by a rebel S-76 helicopter
  • 9:00am:
  • 11:30am
    • Just as President Marcos addresses the crowds at Malacanang Palace, RPN-9, BBC Channel 2 and IBC-13 all sign-off as rebel soldiers capture the Broadcast City complex, transmitters and studios of said stations. Channels 4 and 7 continue airing as usual. The President had just taken what would be his final inauguration oath of office beforehand
  • 9:00pm
    • President Marcos and his family leave the country aboard American plane to Hawaii at evening from the Clark Air Base, Radio Veritas and PTV Channel 4 announce. As news of their departure reaches the people, the millions who gathered at EDSA rejoice, since their departure sparks the conclusion of the revolution. Crowds already position along Mendiola Street, Recto Avenue and Legarda Street, having arrived there late in the afternoon to await the departure of the First Family
  • 9:20pm
    • Within minutes of the announcement of the departure of the Marcos family, President Aquino makes her first ever live address to the nation as chief executive via Channel 4
  • 9:45pm
    • Pro-Aquino crowds force the opening of the Malacanang Palace gates, as they open thousands of Aquino supporters and participants of the revolution storm the palace complex with little resistance


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j The EDSA Revolution Website
  2. ^ Batasang Pambansa declares Marcos-Tolentino as snap election winners
  3. ^ Tagumpay ng Bayan Rally
  4. ^ Karnow, Stanley (1989). In Our Image: America's Empire in the Philippines. Random House. p. 415. ISBN 0-394-54975-9. Retrieved 2012-02-28.
  5. ^ [Mr. & Mrs., February 28, 1986]
  6. ^ [Malaya, February 23, 1986]
  7. ^ a b [Ibid.]
  8. ^ Sunday Inquirer Magazine, June 1, 1986