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Bongbong claims Aquinos may have hand in Marcos money scam

Bongbong Marcos said that the Aquino family "has something to do" with the event at UPLB where tens of thousands were duped into going in the hopes of receiving Marcos wealth.

MANILA, Philippines — Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. has accused the long-time rival of his family, the Aquino clan, of orchestrating the event that gathered thousands at the University of the Philippines Los Baños a few weeks ago.

"I'm sure they have something to do with it," Bongbong said, pertaining to the Aquinos. It was the killing of Ninoy Aquino that sparked the People Power Revolution in 1986 that unseated the dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr., Bongbong's father.

Hoping to receive money from the cash fund of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr., thousands flocked to the UPLB in Laguna on September 23.

READ: Thousands flock to UPLB in hopes of Marcos money

The participants, who had nothing but praise for the Marcos family, were carrying booklets about the late strongman entitled "The Life and Achievements of Ferdinand Marcos." The publisher of the pamphlet is the Bullion Buyer Ltd., whose leaders are facing syndicated estafa charges.

Bongbong has denied that their family had anything to do with the event.

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In a media forum on Thursday, Bongbong claimed that the event was a "political action," and was organized by someone who had "political wherewithal."

"May gumastos dito ng malaki. May umupo at may nag-meeting," Marcos added.

READ: Money trail: The Marcos billions

Pressed on who he thinks was behind the event, he replied: "Sino ang sumisira sa mga Marcos? Sino in the past, I don't know how many years, na walang ginawa na gustong sirain ang mga Marcos? (Who are maligning the Marcoses? Who in the past, I don't know how many years, have done nothing but destroy the Marcoses?)"

When he refused to name names, a reporter asked if he was pertaining to the Aquinos. Bongbong said the family might have had a hand in the event.

Aquino camp reacts

But lawyer Abigail Valte, spokesperson of former President Benigno Aquino II, only has this to say about Bongbong's allegations: "Pasensya na kay Senador Bongbong Marcos dahil hindi namin kayang sumang-ayon sa pantasya nyang pagbigyan at pansinin sila."

Valte said that if Bongbong really wants to protect his father's "legacy," he should have condemned those that duped the people.

"Bakit di nya agarang ikondena ang nanloko sa ating mga kababayan? Di ba dapat syang sumama sa pagsampa ng kaso laban sa mga sumisira sa pangalan ng kanilang angkan?" Valte added.

In his statement issued on the night that the gathering happened, Bongbong distanced himself from the event and warned the public of "unscrupulous individuals" who are using the Marcos family to advance their personal interests.

Bongbong said that they are already investigating who is behind the said event.

A report from VERA files looked into the scheme which has duped thousands across the nation. The gathering at UPLB was organized by a group called One Social Family Credit Cooperative.

READ: Scammers sell Marcos 'legacy' to poor Filipinos

Those who went to the event brought with them a pamphlet purchased for P30 produced by the Bullion Buyer Ltd. 

During the UPLB event, Emmanuel Destura, one of the founders of the Bullion Buyer Ltd., surfaced. He claimed that Marcos gave his father a "still-undetermined tonnage of gold deposits in Switzerland."

The Securities and Exchange Commission has already issued a statement in April 2017 warning that schemes of the Bullion Buyer Ltd. violate the Securities Regulation Code. It also warned all local government authorities that the company is unregistered.

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