A group of 10 members of the 48-man commission that wrote the 1987 Constitution on Thursday denounced the burial of former strongman Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, calling it “shameless treachery.”
The framers, in a statement on the eve of the anti-Marcos “Black Friday” protest at Rizal Park today, said the burial ran afoul of the Charter, which they said envisioned a clean break from Marcos’ one-man rule.
This was contrary to the November 8 Supreme Court ruling that said no law prevented the Duterte administration from allowing the interment at the “heroes’ cemetery.”
“We condemn the burial of the dictator Marcos in the Libingan ng mga Bayani, in shameless treachery, in disregard of the facts of history, in contempt of the grief and sufferings of the bereaved victims of martial law, and in defiance of the hopes of our people and their children to build a future based on the values of truth, justice, respect for human rights and caring for others,” the said.
The 10 framers who signed the statement were Felicitas Aquino-Arroyo, Adolfo Azcuna, Florangel Rosario Braid, Hilario Davide Jr., Edmundo Garcia, Jose Luis Martin Gascon, Christian Monsod, Ricardo Romulo, Jaime Tadeo and Bernardo Villegas.
The Supreme Court ruling junked the position of Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio that the 1986 “People Power” revolt that ousted Marcos amounted to a “dishonorable discharge,” which supposedly disqualified the former leader from burial at the military-run cemetery in Taguig.
But the framers said: “The overthrow of the Marcos dictatorship is the backdrop to the drafting of the 1987 Constitution.”
Moreover, the Charter reflected the “valiant resistance to ruthless dictatorial rule and vision of a new social order” of the people.
Returning from his trip to Peru to attend the annual summit of Pacific rim nations, Duterte on late Wednesday defended anew his decision to allow Marcos’ interment at the Libingan, pointing out that former presidents and war veterans were entitled to such privilege.
“All of the decisions that I have made and still have to make are always guided by the common good and the general welfare of the people,” he said.
“Never mind about a hero, because we are to document something like that. To document heroism requires history. It’s not easy,” he said in remarks at the Davao International Airport.
On Thursday, the government’s anti-coup force was put on standby for deployment anytime to reinforce the Philippine National Police (PNP) in connection with Black Friday protest.
“It’s the PNP that has the primary role and if it needs help, our Joint Task Force National Capital Region is always ready,” said Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Gen. Ricardo Visaya.