Since the Supreme Court’s decision about the eligibility of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos’ remains to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, his daughter, Ilocos Governor Imee Marcos have been dropping words like “sorry,” “forgiveness,” and “moving on” when talking to the media.
On November 8, during her interview with Jessica Soho on GMA News TV’s “State of the Nation,” Imee clarified that she as only talking about forgiveness, not asking for apology, to the victims of Martial Law.
“Hindi apology ang sinasabi ko. Sa akin forgiveness na lang sa lahat ng nakalipas at sa lahat ng mga nangyari sa buhay natin. E, talagang kinakailangan mag-move on,” Imee said.
“Alam ko marami sa kanila ang nakalugmok, talagang babad na babad diyan. Ang akin naman, kami rin sa pangkat naming may hinanakit, may galit, mag pagpo-poot. Kailangan malipasan na, laktawana natin yan, magka-isa. ‘Yun ang pinaka-importante, yung paghihilom at pagkaka-isa,” she added.
Earlier in September, during the celebration of her father’s 99th birthday anniversary, Imee said: “Anuman ang kasalanan ng aking ama sapagkat hindi naman niya kailanman sinabi na siya ay hindi tao lamang na nagkakamali at nagkakasala.”
She also narrated how much of a soldier her father was, so much so that whenever he got sick, he wanted to be taken to a soldier’s hospital. Imee added that her father wanted to be buried at the Libingan beside other Filipino sodliers, noting that they only wanted a “simple soldier’s burial” for the former president, not a state funeral.
On November 10, Imee said that unlike her brother, former Senator Bongbong Marcos, she is willing to apologize to the victims of human rights violations during Martial Law.
“I feel in my heart that if in any way you have hurt someone, you should say sorry even if it’s not intentional. Even if it was not policy,” Imee said during her interview on ANC’s Headstart.
However, Imee emphasized that she would not make an admission of guilt when she said: “Yung admission of guilt, unang-una ang liit-liit ko noon. Paano ko ia-admit hindi ko naman alam.”
Imee also said that they are not changing history and that some people thanked her father for his kindness, for his infrastructure projects.
In yet another interview on Saturday, November 12, Imee apologized for the “unexpected events” during Martial Law.
“Iyong tungkol sa apology, sabi ko nga nanghihingi na ako ng patawad sa lahat ng nasakatan sa mga hindi inaasahang mga pangyayari dahil kailanman hindi ninais na may masaktan,” she said.
“Wala namang sinasabi na walang kasalanan. Eh talaga namang inaamin nating lahat,” she said while clarifying that the Marcoses are not denying that there were indeed human rights abuses during martial rule.
Imee’s statement was in response to former President Fidel V. Ramos’ statement.
“Address [the apology] to all the descendants of the victims, whether or not there is an investigation, to show sincere desire to discard, reject and eliminate already all the dictatorial tendencies and happenings during that period,” Ramos said.
“Kung kakalimutan ‘yun o iismolin o binabalewala ‘yan (EDSA People Power Revolution), para mong binalewala ‘yung paghihirap, pagsisikap, kontribusyon ng mga sundalo at mga pulis kagaya namin,” Ramos added.
On November 13, Imee repeated once more that Martial Law victims cannot expect a “legal admission” from the Marcoses.
“Pinagtutukuyan ko, walang tao na perpekto at sa hindi inaasahang pangyayari, may nasasaktan, may nagkamali. Hindi naman nagsasabi miski saan sa amin na perpektong tatay ko. Siya mismo ang unang aamin na marami siyang kapalpakan,” Imee said.
“Ang iba diyan, ang gusto [ay] may legal admission of guilt na palagay ko ay napakahirap namang gawin lalo pa batang-bata pa ko. Hindi ko naman kayang gawin kahit pilitin ninyo ko at wala namang papayag sa aming abugado noong ganung klaseng legal admission of guilt. Iyon ang hinahanap nila, eh Malabo naman,” she added.
After Imee’s of apology and forgiveness regarding her father and her family’s role during Martial Law, the netizens have had enough. They voiced out their dissatisfaction with the “insincere” apologies from the Marcoses, especially from Imee.
Facebook user Dino Manrique told her to stop her insincerity and asked her if she still remembered Archimedes Trajano.
“Imee, tigilan mo ang hilaw mong “Sorry.” Hindi “inadvertently may nasagasaan o nasaktan.” Sadyang sinagasaan, sinaktan, ginahasa at pinatay. State policy iyan ng tatay mo at ng pamilya mo,” Manrique said.
“Naaalala mo si Archimedes Trajano? Naaalala mo nang nagtanong siya sa iyo sa isang Open Forum at pinuna niya ang pagkakatalaga mo bilang director ng isang organisasyon? Naaalala mo ang kaniyang mukha? Nakita mo ba ang kaniyang pasa-pasang mukha pagkatapos siyang i-torture at patayin ng mga militar? Ng mga tauhan ng pamilya niyo? #NoToMarcosBurialAtLnmB#MarcosNOTaHero #NeverForget #NeverAgain,” he added.
Manrique also included Trajano’s story, as obtained from bantayog.org. Then 21-year-old Trajano asked Imee during an open forum why she was appointed as the director of the Kabataang Baranggay in 1977 and how he was kidnapped, tortured and killed by Imee’s military escorts.
The National Union of Students of the Philippines also has something to say to Imee: “Never forget Archimedes Trajano!”
“Imee Marcos was old enough back then to recall that it was her who ordered the killing of Mapua students Archimedes Trajano. Just inquiring if she was indeed qualified to lead the Kabataang Barangay, Archimedes was forcibly removed out of the forum, tortured, and killed by the military escorts of the Dictator’s daughter. I believe that this memory of triumph over criticisms is still fresh in her recollections,” said NUSP spokesperson Kevin Castro in response to Imee’s statement about “legal admission of guilt” to the crimes committed during her father’s regime.
“The Marcoses have the guts to demand that we forgive them and to just move on amidst the sufferings of the Filipino people during their patriarch’s regime. By forgiving them, we are forgetting the dark past endowed by the Marcoses on the history of Filipino struggle. By moving on, we are disregarding the sacrifices made by thousands of Filipinos for national democracy,” Castro added.