The 1992 agreement
THAT DOES IT - Korina Sanchez (The Freeman) - August 15, 2016 - 12:00am

I really wonder why an agreement in 1992 signed during the Ramos administration, setting four conditions for the return of Marcos' remains is only coming out now. According to then Interior Secretary Rafael Alunan who represented President Ramos, there were four conditions set before allowing the Marcos remains to comeback into the country.  

The body is to be flown directly to Ilocos. Marcos would be given honors as a Major, his last rank in military service. His body is not to be paraded in Metro Manila. And his body is not to be buried at the LibinganngmgaBayani, but in Batac, Ilocos Norte, beside his mother, as apparently requested by him. So the question is, is the agreement signed in 1992 under official conditions, still valid and binding? If so, why is the burial of Marcos now going to push through at the Libingan next month?

Burying Marcos at the Libingan was one of President Duterte's campaign promises. So if this was already being considered then, why is this agreement only making the news today?

Is it because there is no more stopping the burial of the former dictator at the hallowed site? I would think that an agreement made by no less than a Philippine President would be binding even to this day, especially since some of the conditions have not yet been met.

Marcos was not buried but put on refrigerated display, possibly hoping for a "friendly" president to grant the Marcos family their wish of immortalizing him at the Libingan. They finally got it. According to Alunan, it is the President's prerogative to finally decide on Marcos' final resting place.

Lawmakers against the burial at the Libingan have said that since there is a law governing those allowed to be buried there, then the issue should be taken to the courts, specifically the Supreme Court, which is exactly what some groups are now going to do.

With the emergence of the 1992 agreement, they may have a case to present the high court. Ramos and Alunan themselves have no authority to enforce the agreement, since they are no longer government officials.

The protests have begun. Hundreds have taken to the streets to voice their opposition to the planned and approved burial. I sincerely doubt the burying of Marcos at the Libingan would bring closure and unify the nation. It seems the opposite. Especially with comments from Duterte's official family saying that those imprisoned and killed during Martial Law should not complain, as the Marcos administration was just in "self-preservation" mode.

So I guess this kind of reasoning also sits well with every despot this planet has had the misfortune of dealing with.

How can we unite behind a statement like this?

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