Aquino: Burial for Marcos a ‘desecration’ of Libingan
Former President Benigno Aquino III on Sunday night described a burial among heroes for the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos as a “desecration” of the Libingan ng mga Bayani (LNMB).
“The pro [burial] seems to be one group. The anti- burial seems to be so many groups, and in a sense representing the whole political spectrum… I still cling to the hope that there are a lot, if not a very significant majority, who are against this burial and the desecration of the Libingan ng mga Bayani,” Aquino said.
Aquino briefly joined the crowd that gathered at the Lapu-Lapu Monument at the Luneta for the “Pray for 8” event—a prayer rally and concert organized to call on at least eight justices of the Supreme Court to vote against the Duterte administration’s pledge to inter the late dictator at the LNMB.
The burial of Marcos at the LNMB was widely perceived as a concession by President Rodrigo Duterte to the dictator’s family, led by former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., a close friend and ally of the Chief Executive.
Aquino reiterated that it was time for other martial law families to share their stories, which was one of the reasons why he has mostly been silent on the Marcos burial issue.
He also wore white on Sunday, and not his traditional yellow shirt, to show unity with those who attended the gathering.
“It was a suggestion from the organizers [to wear white]. Perhaps they just want to make sure that this is not again going to be perceived as a fight between the Marcoses and the Aquinos. And I agree that that should be a clear message… This is everybody’s fight,” Aquino said.
Aquino arrived with former Cabinet member and defeated presidential candidate Manuel “Mar” Roxas II. Senator Francis Pangilinan, who has been designated as acting Liberal Party president, later joined them.
Aquino, the only son of democracy icons Ninoy and Cory, told reporters that he went to Luneta upon the invitation of the online group The Silent Majority (TSM), one of the event organizers, to show his solidarity with those who opposed Marcos’ burial at a cemetery reserved for the country’s heroes.
“I agree with [the people’s] opinion that the nation should honor extraordinary Filipinos… And I agree with those who are here that Mr. Marcos should not be buried [at the LNMB],” Aquino said. RAM/rga
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