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Opposition solons doubt Marcoses’ willingness to return ill-gotten wealth

/ 10:26 PM August 29, 2017
Marcos family

This photo, taken on Nov. 18, 2017, shows the Marcos family shortly after the burial of their patriarch, former President Ferdinand Marcos, at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee Marcos thanks supporters, with her brother former Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr., and sister Irene Marcos-Araneta. (Photo by MARIANNE BERMUDEZ / Philippine Daily Inquirer)

Opposition lawmakers on Tuesday cast doubt on the pronouncement of President Rodrigo Duterte that the family of former President Ferdinand Marcos would be “willing to open” and “return” to the government their alleged ill-gotten wealth, which supposedly includes gold bars.

In separate statements, Akbayan Rep. Tom Villarin and Ifugao Rep. Teddy Baguilat expressed doubt that the Marcoses would be willing to return the alleged ill-gotten wealth accumulated during their two-decade regime.

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Villarin called the sudden turn-around of the Marcoses an “unexpected miracle.”

READ: Duterte: Marcos family willing to open, return ‘wealth in question’

“The Marcoses are accused of high crimes against the Filipino people from massive human rights violations to amassing $10-B in ill-gotten wealth. If they return the stolen wealth and make a public confession of their deeds, without conditions nor seeking immunity from criminal prosecution, it is an unexpected miracle,” Villarin said.

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But the lawmaker feared it could just be another propaganda stunt of the President amid public outrage over the spate of summary killings in his war on drugs.

“Otherwise, this is just pure propaganda to lure the public to a false sense of reality where public outrage over killings have risen to a crescendo,” Villarin said “Filipinos should know better when we are taken for a ride or not.”

“This could be much ado over nothing,” he added.

For his part, Baguilat said he found it “odd” the President spoke on behalf of the Marcos family.

The Ifugao lawmaker posed this question: “Would this also mean that they are willing to admit that they had indeed amass ill-gotten wealth and are willing to subject themselves to the justice mill for crimes against the people?”

In November last year, Duterte allowed giving a heroes’ burial to the late dictator at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, despite public outrage. Duterte and the former president’s son, former Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, are also allies. /atm

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TAGS: Ill-gotten wealth, Marcos Family, Rodrigo Duterte, Teddy Baguilat, Tom Villarin
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