Presidential legal counsel Salvador Panelo said that Filipinos have no right to question President Rodrigo Duterte’s decision to give the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos’ a burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
He added that the Filipinos already know about Duterte’s promise to allow Marcos’ remains to be buried at the heroes’ cemetery.
“We Filipinos as voters heard that and accepted that, and we gave him the mandate. Therefore I think, especially those who voted for him, have no right to question him now, having given him the authority to do that,” Panelo told reporters on August 10.
Panelo could be referring to Duterte’s ambush interview in February during his campaign in Ilocos Norte when he said, “My decision will be to allow his (Marcos) burial in Libingan ng mga Bayani. Because he was a great president and he was a hero…”
But Duterte contradicted this statement later in August, when he said that Marcos is not a hero.
“Even if he is not a hero, he was a soldier,” Duterte said.
Duterte has repeatedly said that Marcos was a former president and a soldier, which would qualify him for a spot at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, which Panelo agreed with.
“The Armed Forces regulation is very clear. Soldiers as well as presidents are privileged to be interred there,” Panelo said.
This is despite reports from the US Army and American journalists that showed Marcos faked his war claims and medals. Even the family of the real Bessang Pass hero coming out to prove that Marcos faked his story about the famous battle.
But Panelo has replied to this issue of fake Marcos war medals by saying, “The regulation does not distinguish if you are a president or a soldier, or a good one or a bad one. There is no question that this president is entitled to be interred.”
Human rights victims during the Marcos regime filed a petition at the Supreme Court to stop the dictator’s burial, while other oppositions cited how Marcos himself wanted to be buried in Ilocos Norte, beside his mother.
The latest statement from Malacañang said that they will respect the decision of the Supreme Court on Marcos’ burial.