MANILA Mayor Joseph Ejercito Estrada said he would have buried the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani when he was president, but wasn’t able to do so because his term was cut short.
Estrada said that when he was president, he had finalized plans with the Marcos family to bury the late president at the Libingan.
Like Marcos in 1986, Estrada was ousted by a “people power” uprising on EDSA in 2001.
Estrada urged anti-Marcos protesters to stop their rallies, saying they were just wasting their time.
He gave the advise despite allowing the so-called “Black Friday” rallies that saw hundreds of protesters against the November 18 Marcos burial converge in various locations in Manila and several provinces.
“They’re just wasting their time. Instead they should look for…how they can help build our country,” he said.
“He (Marcos) is already dead. He’s dead. And as Christians, we have no authority anymore to judge a dead person,” he added.
He said he allowed anti-Marcos groups to stage street demonstrations in Manila even without rally permits, only because it was directed by President Rodrigo Duterte, who allowed the Marcos interment.
In August, Estrada said he was in favor of Marcos’ burial at the Libingan, saying Filipinos should learn to move on and respect the dead.
During Marcos’ reign, Estrada was mayor of San Juan from 1969 until the 1986 revolt that ousted the late dictator.
When Corazon Aquino assumed the presidency in 1986, all elected officials of the local government, including Estrada, were removed and replaced by appointed officers in charge.