Chief govt lawyer defends Marcos burial


THE government’s chief lawyer on Sunday defended the “secret” burial of strongman Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, arguing that the November 8 Supreme Court ruling that allowed it had immediate effect.

Solicitor General Jose Calida said there was nothing unlawful in allowing the Marcos family to proceed with the interment at the “heroes’ cemetery” in Taguig City last Friday, as the petitions against it had already been dismissed.

Calida spearheaded the legal defense of President Rodrigo Duterte’s instruction to the military to allow the interment, which was vehemently opposed by victims of Marcos’ Martial Law regime and militant groups.

“As a result of the dismissal of the petitions, there was no further hindrance for the respondents (Palace, Department of National Defense and Armed Forces) to proceed with the burial of Ferdinand Marcos’ remains at [the Libingan],” Calida said.

Calida reiterated that Marcos’ achievements as a soldier who fought the Japanese during World War II should not be diminished by his ouster during the “People Power” revolt in 1986.

The Marcos camp claims the former president was entitled to be buried at the Libingan because he was a former Defense secretary, a World War 2 veteran and a Medal of Valor recipient.

He slammed the claim of Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman and other petitioners that the burial was a contemptuous act as the ruling was not yet final.

“Representative Lagman … and other lawyer-critics should brush up first on their knowledge of recent jurisprudence regarding the effect of the lifting of status quo ante orders in certiorari cases before they bash the respondents in media,” Calida said.

Calida also said it was mathematically impossible to reverse decision of the high court given the clear margin in the 9-5 voting of the justices.

Also, the granting of a motion for reconsideration will be improbable, he said.

“Given the numerical superiority of the majority, I don’t think the Supreme Court will reverse it. The 9-5 decision is not only a clear margin. It’s a landslide margin similar to President Duterte’s victory over his opponents during the May 2016 presidential elections,” he stressed.

Calida urged the public to “respect and abide by the SC decision” and “set aside our differences and stand under united the rule of law.”

“The judicial imprimatur given by the Honorable Court vindicates the political wisdom of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to hasten unity and national healing. It puts to rest the bitter debate which has divided our people for far too long. It is a welcome development for the Filipino people who thirst for peace and change,” he said.


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  1. There are so many dictators who live and die. No one was consider a Hero in their own country mostly are prosecuted because of their criminal behavior. Our Supreme Court said Because no one charge him of Crime. He is consider innocent of all the mass killing happen during his dictatorial government.. What a corrupt supreme court.
    Anyway Did they ever Question the Judicial Killing that’s happening in our Beloved Country?

    Either they are scared or just plain Dumb..

  2. Tama po yang article na yan. My father is in LNMB , a soldier too.He was given 21 gun salute and we have a flag..

    I salute you manila times for that article. Spread it in all media para matigil na yang issue.

  3. mabait na pinoy on

    The majority of the Supreme Court based their decision on the Armed Forces Regulation, for Marcos’ eligibility to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, because he was once a member of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. However, the petitioners failed to bring out that there are two types of guidelines – statutory and the regulatory guidelines. Statutory guidelines were debated, crafted or created in Congress (either or both houses) and the AF Regulations were created by someone and was sent up to be signed or approved by the Secretary of Defense. Armed Forces Regulations, can be amended whoever is the sitting Secretary of Defense.

    The basis of the Supremes Court’s decision was very shallow and it seems like the whole thing was politically motivated. It was all politics, and I personally feel sorry for the victims (the living and the dead) of Martial Law.

    • MABAIT NA PINOY who was the last defense secretary and president who signed or amended the said law? Di ba it was Ramos and Cory? So dont blame the present administration because they simply follow the enforceable law and never even tried to amend such law to conform to their own needs. HINDI KA PALA MABAIT NA PINOY IKAY AY INUTIL AT BALASUBAS NA PINOY.