MANILA, Philippines – The late Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos has been commemorated with a national stamp, a post office official said Friday, October 27, the latest honor for the strongman that has outraged many Filipinos.
The stamp, showing a smiling Marcos with his signature and the words "Birth Centenary," was issued to mark the 100th anniversary of his birth on September 11, Luis Carlos, assistant post master of Philippine Postal Corporation (Phlpost), told AFP.
He insisted the stamp had no political overtones and was released as part of a series of stamps marking presidents' 100th birthdays.
"We are just following the guidelines. The presidents who have birth centenaries have stamps issued," Carlos said.
It comes after President Rodrigo Duterte allowed the dictator's body to be buried in the national "Heroes' Cemetery" (Libingan ng Mga Bayani) in November despite his lengthy record of abuse and corruption.
Duterte, an ally of the Marcos family, has been accused of whitewashing the late dictator's career. (Read: Malacañang declares holiday in Ilocos Norte for Marcos' 100th birthday)
Marcos, his family and their cronies plundered up to $10 billion from state coffers and plunged the Philippines into crippling debt during his rule, according to government investigators and historians. (Read: Marcos' 100th birthday 'no reason to celebrate' – lawmakers)
The dictator also oversaw widespread human rights abuses to maintain his control of the country and enable his plundering, with thousands of people killed and tortured, previous Philippine governments said.
He was overthrown by a military-backed popular revolt in 1986 and died in exile in 1989.
Reaction on social media to the Marcos stamp has been largely negative.
"They have a commemorative stamp for Ferdinand Marcos. Go ahead (post office). Do Hitler and Pol Pot too," said one person on Twitter.
"Put the adhesive on the front so we can spit on it," another tweet read. – Rappler.com