The petition on change.org, “Keep Marcos in Ilocos,” was started by Ilocanos in Region 1, where according to them, many voted for Duterte.
The petitioners reminded Duterte of his “call for national unity and to promote healing in our land.”
“Sir, we know you promised then Sen. Bongbong Marcos that in exchange for his support for you, you will allow him to bury former Pres. Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, against even the former President’s own wishes: which was to be buried beside his mother Doña Josefa, in their hometown in Ilocos,” they said.
They also pointed out the competition between Marcos and Alan Peter Cayetano for the position as Duterte’s running mate during the last elections.
“Bongbong did support you, even after he had declared himself Sen. Miriam Santiago’s running mate, betraying Sen. Miriam [Defensor-Santiago]. He even implicated you in betraying Alan Cayetano, until you strongly emphasized that Sen. Cayetano is indeed your running mate,” the petitioners said.
The petition appealed to keep Marcos in Ilocos because of the tourism activities his tomb brings to the region.
“Sir, as Ilocanos, we ask you to STOP their plans, and to KEEP MARCOS IN ILOCOS. For many decades now, his tomb in Ilocos has boosted tourism and the local economy here. Hundreds, if not thousands, could be jobless if Apo Marcos were to be moved,” they said.
The petitioners also noted how Duterte’s mother fought Marcos dictatorship, hence his decision to give Marcos a hero’s burial is an “affront” to her legacy.
“Resting in Ilocos was also the late President’s wish – -and it is a wise thing, to be buried close to the people that mattered most to him. If he is to be given a State Funeral on the account that he was a former President, let it be here in Batac, Ilocos Region – that would be fair. But to allow him to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani will be an injustice to the thousands of people who were tortured and died under his dictatorship, and an affront to the legacy of your own mother, who fought against his Martial Law, too,” the petition said.
Despite the protests and criticisms against Marcos’ burial, Duterte has remained firm in his decision. He said that he is only following the law and that buying the late strongman at the Libingan ‘doesn’t mean that he’s a hero.’
Even Duterte’s allies, like Cayetano, former Senate President Nene Pimentel and Rafael Alunan III voiced out their opposition against the dictator’s burial.
This has prompted Martial Law victims to ask the Supreme Court to stop the hero’s burial for Marcos.