Believe it or not, a Marcos burial in the Philippines hounded five past Philippine presidents, as early as the Cory Aquino presidency. Here are what they remarked:
Benigno Aquino III
Benigno Aquino III (or Noynoy or PNoy) Aquino’s presidency was immediately before the present presidency of Rodrigo Duterte. It was from 2010 to 2016. And at the latter part of his presidency, Aquino already dismissed the idea of Marcos being buried at the Libingan ng Mga Bayani (LNMB) in Taguig.
“The pro [burial] seems to be one group. The anti- burial seems to be so many groups, and in a sense representing the whole political spectrum… I still cling to the hope that there are a lot, if not a very significant majority, who are against this burial and the desecration of the Libingan ng mga Bayani.” This was in November 7, 2016.
He probably sensed an impending Marcos burial after his term.
Gloria Macapagal Arroyo
A term before the Aquino administration, then President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo stepped down from her position. Later, after being elected in Congress, she expressed approval of a Marcos burial at the LNMB. Some observers saw this as an intention to annoy then President Benigno Aquino III who had been after government anomalies during her incumbency (2001 t0 2010) and which incriminated her. She had this to say:
“I signed a resolution for (Marcos burial at the LNMB) in the previous Congress so I’m for it,” she said.
However, it would be remembered how Arroyo had opposed the burial when she was still president.
Joseph Estrada was unseated from the presidency (1998 to 2001) by a people power revolt dubbed “People Power 2” in 2001 and which gave way to his vice president, Gloria Arroyo, being declared president. Being a known staunch Marcos supporter even in Marcos’ time, Estrada had this to say:
“Who, among us, do not commit mistakes? As Jesus Christ said, ‘anyone who has not sinned may cast the first stone.’ Being a Christian, we should practice forgiveness. [Marcos] was also a former president and a former guerrilla. Every president is entitled to be buried there (at the LNMB),” Estrada said.
Fidel V. Ramos
Ramos was a former Marcos ally and in fact helped the strongman establish martial law in the Philippines. But later, he bolted from Marcos and, together with Marcos’ defense minister, Juan Ponce Enrile, started the so-called EDSA People Power Revolution that seated the Cory Aquino presidency. He became president (1992 to 1998) after Cory Aquino’s presidency.
In his presidency, the Marcoses tried to bargain with him for a safe return to the Philippines and a Marcos burial in Ilocos Norte (agreed on with a written document), not at the LNMB.
See what Ramos had to say on the Marcos burial at LNMB:
“I said officially, let the people decide. Who are the people? Our representatives and senators now sitting in Congress,” he said.
Right after the death of former Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos in 1989, his burial in the country started becoming a hot political issue. The first affected was the Cory Aquino Administration.
Corazon “Cory” Aquino had suffered much from the martial law years when her husband, Benigno “Ninoy” Aquinio, a staunch Marcos critic, became a political prisoner, climaxing in his assassination in August 21, 1983. Then she bravely ran against Marcos in a 1986 snap election and won the presidency. During her term (1986 to 1992), he naturally declined a Marcos burial in the Philippines, much less at the LNMB.
Her reason was that she feared for “the safety of those who would take the death of Mr. Marcos in widely and passionately conflicting ways.” This was according to a 1989 story published by New York Times.