For idol fans, the Manila Idol Matsuri was a first event of its kind in the Philippines dedicated to Japanese idol culture featuring MNL48 (the official sister group of AKB48) and indie idol groups like Aidoru Sozai, Pastel∞Mix, ALICE Project, CH4U, and more. The event happened on September 2, 2018, at the TIU Theater inside Makati Square, Makati City, Philippines.
While all seemed well on the surface, some members of the performing idol groups took to social media to express their disappointment on the lack of security of the venue’s backstage which ended them being robbed of 80,000 php ($1487.27 USD) worth of valuables. The posts also expressed the organizer’s apparent victim-blaming and lack of accountability in relation to the incident.
Kibi Lim, one of the members of ALICE Project expressed that the venue had no CCTV cameras and no guards in the “authorized personnel only area”.
The organizers of Manila Idol Matsuri posted a statement on Saturday evening September 7 on their official Facebook page that they are now coordinating with local authorities regarding the alleged theft.
“Due to the sensitive nature of the information and processes involved, any details on the investigation are confidential.”
When this statement was released, attendees and supporters of the involved idol groups only felt anger and disappointment over the organizer’s actions for it would have been better if this was dealt with this sooner than later.