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Panelo: All Presidents—good or bad—may be buried at Libingan

By: - Reporter / @NCorralesINQ
/ 02:31 PM August 09, 2016
Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO / NINO JESUS ORBETA

Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO / NINO JESUS ORBETA

Malacañang will be opposing plans for any legal move to derail the burial of former President Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, a Palace official said Tuesday.

Presidential legal counsel Salvador Panelo said Marcos was qualified to be buried at the hero’s cemetery both as a former President and as a soldier.

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“The regulation issued by the Armed Forces of the Philippines is very clear: those who are entitled to be interred in the Libingan ng mga Bayani are, among others, soldiers and presidents, so on the basis of that the late President Marcos is entitled to be buried there,” Panelo said in a chance interview with reporters.

“It does not distinguish whether a President is good, bad, handsome or ugly. If you’re a President, you’re entitled to be buried there,” he added.

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READ: House leaders: Marcos deserves hero’s burial as former President

Panelo also disputed the claims of critics that Marcos had fake medals.

“According to some oppositors, President Marcos had fake medals but regulation does not distinguish whether a soldier has fake medals or not,” he said.

“Fact is, President Marcos was a soldier, he fought the Japanese, created a Maharlika group and we cannot dispute that, so as a soldier, he is entitled to be buried at Libingan ng mga Bayani,” he said.

No legal basis

The Palace official said there was no legal basis to file a temporary restraining order against Duterte’s directive to bury Marcos at the hero’s cemetery.

READ: ‘Hero’s burial for Marcos will cause divisiveness’

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“I don’t think there is a legal basis for that (but) anybody can file any petition in court,” he said.

He said Marcos was never “charged with crime of moral turpitude.”

“Mr. Marcos was not charged with crime of moral turpitude,” he said.

While the court would decide for any legal move against the former President’s burial, he said the Palace would oppose such actions.

“It depends on the court. Let courts decide on that but we will be opposing it as having no legal basis for the reasons I already stated,” he said. IDL/rga

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TAGS: Ferdinand Marcos, hero’s burial, Human rights, Libingan ng mga Bayani, Martial law, Rodrigo Duterte, Salvador Panelo
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