WATCH: SC holds 2nd oral arguments on Marcos burial
MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court holds the second round of oral arguments on the case involving giving the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos a hero's burial.
The counsels of the Philippine government and the heirs of Marcos defend why he deserves to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
Mara Cepeda reports.
The heirs of Ferdinand Marcos and the Philippine government make their case before the Supreme Court on why the late strongman deserves a hero’s burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayan.
The justices focus on the Duterte administration’s support for Marcos’ burial, the human rights violations committed under Martial Law, and the totality of laws that should be applied in deciding for or against a hero’s interment for the dictator.
After 5 hours of interpellation, Solicitor General Jose Calida believes they made a good case.
Jose Calida, Solicitor General: We argued that President Duterte did not violate any law, did not violate the Constitution and that it is part of his presidential prerogative to allow the interment of former President Marcos at the Libingan, not as a hero but a former president and soldier because it is a political question and the president has exercised his wisdom and that is not justificiable under our rules.
Calida adds that Marcos’ burial is in sync with Duterte’s “well-meaning” desire for national healing.
But Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno disagrees.
She asks why the state must set aside the feelings of around 75,000 recognized Martial Law victims just to fulfill Duterte’s wish.
Maria Lourdes Sereno, Chief Justice: Where is the reparation? Where is the acknowlegement, where is the confession, where is the penalty on the part of the Marcoses?
She points out that Filipino taxpayers, not the Marcoses, are the ones paying for the victims’ reparation.
Calida says otherwise.
Jose Calida, Solicitor General: Yeah, there will be no effect. There’s no correlation between the burial and the pending cases against Marcos.
Albay 1st District Representative Edcel Lagman, a petitioner, thinks the respondents failed to defend their side.
Edcel Lagman, Albay 1st District Representative: As far as I’m concerned, the Solicitor General failed to rebut or controvert the historical facts documenting the sins of Marcos which utterly disqualify him from being buried in the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
All parties and resource persons are ordered to submit their memoranda after 20 days. The SC also moves to extend the status quo ante order on Marcos’ remains to October 18.
The latest decision of the High Court stops the government from burying Marcos on September 18.
As the justices study the arguments, the debate continues. Is Marcos a hero or not? Does the late dictator deserve a hero’s burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani?
Mara Cepeda, Rappler, Manila. – Rappler.com