His headstone?

THAT DOES IT - Korina Sanchez - The Freeman

The issue still rages on as to whether Marcos should be allowed buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. The Palace has spoken regarding the 1992 agreement forged during the Ramos administration, stating that it is not binding in the current administration. One of the conditions of the said agreement was for Marcos to be buried in Ilocos, not at the Libingan. It is up to President Duterte if he will honor the agreement or not. Obviously, he will not.

Several petitioners have elevated the issue to the Supreme Court, in attempt to stop the burial scheduled next month, adamant that Marcos has no right to be buried at the Libingan. Human rights violations, disappearances, torture, plunder, as well as the issue of the supposed medals Marcos received and that he was ousted in a popular uprising make up the crux of the case against the burial. Whether the high court will give weight to the 1992 agreement is not known.  

A lawmaker has suggested changing the name of the cemetery, replacing "Bayani" with something else. After all, what's in a name?

According to the caretaker of the grounds, not everyone interred at the Libingan are "heroes."There are past presidents, former cabinet members and government officials, national artists, and scientists, several generals and even some widows, aside of course from the thousands of soldiers. As long as they meet the requirements for burial at the Libingan, they can be interred. But the question is, are any of them accused of human rights violations, disappearances, plunder, torture, faking military honors or even ousted from power by the people?

President Duterte has always said that the nation will unite once Marcos has been buried. He should tell that to the victims and the families of those who suffered under the Marcos regime, whose wounds have never really healed. There seems to be little sympathy for those stillseeking justice from the crimes of  Martial Law. Instead, they are practically blamed for whatever they went through, stating that the Marcos administration was simply in "self-preservation mode."

Quite a convenient answer for so many crimes committed against so many. Despots would do well to note this view in defense of their actions. It is this kind of talk that will surely stand in the way of unifying the nation.

There are only a few weeks left before the planned burial. The Supreme Court has its work cut out for them. It is probably the last chance of those against the burial. One more fight against a man whom history has labeled the second most corrupt leader in history. Should that be on his headstone?

[email protected].

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