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Opinion

A new “Bagong Lipunan”?

THAT DOES IT - Korina Sanchez - The Freeman

A new president and vice president have been proclaimed by Congress last Wednesday. Not since 2008 have a presidential candidate and his running mate won in an election. Both have also won by landslides, even becoming the majority winner for both positions. Like them or hate them, Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Sara Duterte Carpio will assume the two highest positions in the land come June 30. I’ve said this before, I never imagined I would see another Marcos return to the presidency in my lifetime.

Already social media is filled with pages regarding preventing history from being revised, erased, forgotten, or canceled. Many have expressed concern that with Sara Duterte appointed as education secretary, a revision of textbooks containing the period of martial law and the EDSA revolution would be abbreviated or even deleted. Marcos’s spokesman and appointed executive secretary dodged a question on what would be the fate of the EDSA Revolution holiday now that the son of the ousted dictator is president. How Marcos will treat this holiday is yet to be seen.

Then there is the question of ill-gotten wealth yet to be retrieved by the Presidential Commission on Good Government, an agency formed during the Cory Aquino administration to specifically go after Marcos’s ill-gotten wealth. Will it be abolished, sidelined, or ignored in the next six years? The matter of the billions in unpaid taxes is still unresolved with the BIR seemingly sitting on their hands, and the disqualification case against Marcos elevated to the Supreme Court. I’m not holding my breath on this one. As Sen. Pacquiao said, “Expected naman yan”.

We are also starting to see the Marcos Cabinet. We already know the Education secretary, DILG secretary, DOLE secretary, DOJ secretary, and NEDA chief. Most recently Marcos appointed BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno as DOF secretary and Ex-UP President Alfred Pascual as DTI chief. These appointees have served in past administrations, particularly the Estrada and Arroyo administrations. I would assume they are all known Marcos and Duterte supporters. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

There are places where I hear the “Bagong Lipunan” song being played. Feels surreal as I know this song was being played in movie theaters before screenings back in the early 80s. For those who felt the horror and hardships of martial law, hearing that song must be blood-curdling. With Marcos already proclaimed, we should hold him to his promise of not judging him by his ancestors but by his actions. But is a rehashed “Bagong Lipunan” looming on the horizon? “Prove us wrong” is what those who did not vote for him are challenging Marcos.

Let’s see.

EDSA

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