Petitioners to fight Marcos burial at Libingan ‘until the very end’
“Until the very end.” That’s how long petitioners are willing to fight for a reversal of the Supreme Court decision allowing the burial of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
Former Akbyan Rep. Barry Gutierrez, who also serves as lawyer for a group of petitioners, stressed this point on Wednesday before thousands of protesters at the People Power Monument just outside Camp Aguinaldo on Quezon City.
“Umaasa tayo na yung siyam na bumoto na payagan ay sana naman kahit konti magbago ang isip nila,” he said. “Pakinggan naman nila ang sinisigaw ng kasaysayan at muling harapin ang katotohanan, ang ating konstitusyon at mahigit 30 desisyon ng Supreme Court na sinasabing si Marcos ay hindi bayani.”
(“We are hoping that the nine who voted to allow the burial would somehow change their minds. May they listen to what history cries for and may they again face the truth, our Constitution, and the more than 30 Supreme Court rulings saying that Marcos was not a hero.”)
Under secrecy, the Marcoses were able to have the late president buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani on Nov. 18. And yet, the Supreme Court decision was not supposed to be final and executory until 15 days after its announcement on Nov. 8.
The burial has since sparked a series of protests.
At Wednesday’s protest, Gutierrez urged the Supreme Court to review a motion of reconsideration filed before it seeking void its ruling that upheld the order of President Rodrigo Duterte’s to let Marcos be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
“Ang hinihingi namin: Balikan niyo inyong desisyon. Muling aralin, muling tignan ang argumento. At sa huli, kung magbago inyong isip, anong hinihiling natin?” Gutierrez said.
(“What we’re asking for is this: Review your decision. Study it and look at the arguments again. And in the end, if you should change your mind, consider what we’re asking for.”)
The crowd, composed mostly of millennials, responded with a resounding “Hukayin! (Exhume).”
At one point, they also chanted “Baba ni Imee, panghukay!” – referring to the eldest daughter of the late president.
“Hindi naman natin hinihingi dahil gusto natin maging mapaghiganti. Pero sino ba ang nagpumilit na magkaroon ng madaliang paglilibing? Sino ba ang hindi naghintay na maging final ang decision? Sila mismo ang lumabag sa batas, bumastos sa Supreme Court at patago at panakaw na iilibing si Marcos,” Gutierrez said as the crowd cheered.
(“We’re not asking for a reversal of the decision because we want revenge. But who insisted on having a quick burial? Who couldn’t wait for the decision to become final? They were the ones who broke the law, who disrespected the Supreme Court, and buried Marcos on the sly.”)
Among those present at the People Power Monument gathering were Cabinet members of the Aquino administration – former Justice Secretary Leila de Lima (who’s now a senator), former Interior Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas, former Education Secretary Armin Luistro, former Communications Undersecretary Manolo Quezon, and former Social Welfare Secretary Corazon “Dinky” Soliman.
Other personalities who attended were Maria Serena Diokno (who had just resigned as head of National Historical Commission of the Philippines) , Economics professor Solita Collas-Monsod, anti-crime advocate Teresita Ang-See, and former Sen. Wigberto Tañada.
Also sighted in the crowd were actors Pen Medina with his son Ping, Mitch Valdez, and Saab Magalona. There were also musicians Noel Cabangon and Jim Paredes and the The Cheats and Moonstar 88.
The crowd, which organizers placed at 15,000, looked much bigger than the attendance at a similar gathering last Friday. But the Quezon City Police District gave a crowd estimate of only 3,000. /atm
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