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Makabayan hits Andanar for belittling martial law atrocities

/ 05:17 PM November 14, 2016
martin andanar

Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar. Photo by Jeoffrey Maitem/INQUIRER MINDANAO FILE PHOTO

Not brats, just principled fighters.

This was the reaction of Makabayan lawmakers in the House of Representatives to a column of Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar, who called  “brats” the critics of the Supreme Court’s decision allowing a hero’s burial for the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos.

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Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate said that the petitioners include “principled” men like former representatives Satur Ocampo and Neri Colmenares who survived torture during the brutal two-decade regime.

“You cannot label them as brats dahil pagmamaliit dun sa naging karanasan natin sa panahong (because it’s belittling our experience during) martial law,” Zarate told the Inquirer on Monday.

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The lawmaker gave the reaction to Andanar’s Inquirer column titled “An appropriate burial.”

READ: An appropriate burial

Andanar slammed the critics of the Supreme Court decision allowing a hero’s burial for Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, calling them “temperamental brats” who couldn’t respect the high tribunal’s decision and who “threaten” the court with appeals to keep the issue alive.

In striking a parallel to the protests in the US against the election of Donald Trump, Andanar said: “Both the Americans protesting the outcome of a fair election and the Filipinos objecting to the well-considered ruling of our own Supreme Court are undermining institutions. They are temperamental brats refusing to concede to the outcome of regular processes.”

Andanar said President Rodrigo Duterte in supporting the move only wants to bury the issue that has divided the country.

READ: Duterte stands firm on Marcos burial at Libingan ng mga Bayani 

“(T)here are those who do not want the issue to be settled. Some of the petitioners threaten to file a motion for reconsideration, which is their right although it is also a means to keep this burning issue aflame. The legal issues might be, for all intents and purposes, fully settled. But there are those who think preventing the burial is a form of redress worthy of keeping the nation divided,” Andanar said.

READ: Pimentel tells Andanar: Review your history

Zarate said as petitioners, they are entitled to seek a motion for reconsideration under the rules of court.

Zarate said the petitioners as principled fighters should not be likened to brats.

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“These are principled individuals, hindi mo pwedeng ihanay sa mga nagmamaktol lang dahil gustong mag-maktol (you should not likened them to brats who just want to act that way),” Zarate said.

He said the petitioners are driven by a higher motive over the rule of law—the rule of justice to victims of the martial law atrocities.

“We are not invoking the rule of law. We’re invoking a much higher rule, the rule of justice,” Zarate said.

In a press conference, Kabataan Rep. Sarah Elago chided Andanar for setting a bad example to the youth in forgetting the atrocities during martial law.

“Yung sinasabing temperamental brat ang mga tumututol sa paglibing ni Marcos sa Libingan ng mga Bayani ay parang pagsasabi at pag-didiscourage sa ating mga kabataan na alalalahanin ang mga atrocities nung martial law, at maging vigilant sa panawagan na hindi na maulit muli ang lagim ng martial law,” Elago said.

(In calling temperamental brat[s] those who oppose the burial of Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, is like discouraging our youth to remember the atrocities during the martial law and to remain vigilant in calls not to repeat the brutal martial law.)

“Bakit temperamental brats kung pwede namang concerned ang vigilant youth (Why temperamental brats when vigilant youths are concerned)?” she added.

Act Teachers Rep. Antonio Tinio also cautioned the administration against belittling the suffering the martial law victims endured during the dictatorship.

“Dapat mag-ingat din ang Duterte administration, lalo din sa pagmamaliit sa laki ng galit ng mga maraming Pilipino sa desisyon ng Malacañang na pahintulutan ang paglibing ni Marcos sa Libingan ng mga Bayani,” Tinio said.

(The Duterte administration should be careful especially in belittling the enormous hate of many Filipinos in the decision of the Malacañang to allow the burial of Marcos at Libingan ng mga Bayani.)

READ: SC: ‘No grave abuse of discretion’ by Duterte on Marcos burial 

In granting Marcos’ burial, the Supreme Court voting 9-5 said there was no grave abuse of discretion on the part of the President’s in ordering the hero’s burial for Marcos as a former President and soldier.

But magistrates who dissented said it would be illegal to give a hero’s burial to Marcos who had been adjudged by history and the court as a plunderer and a dictator. RAM/rga

READ: Sereno: Marcos burial would be antithesis of symbolic reparation | Leonen: Marcos is no hero; Libingan burial illegal 

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TAGS: Ferdinand Marcos, House of Representatives, Libingan ng mga Bayani, Makabayan, Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar
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