Senate rejects resolution vs Marcos hero's burial

MANILA, Philippines – Failing to get majority votes, the Senate failed to adopt Resolution 86 opposing the planned hero’s burial for former President Ferdinand Marcos, who ran the country as a dictator. 

Since 20 senators were present on Monday, November 14, a majority vote of 11 was needed to adopt the resolution. But with only 8 senators voting in favor of it, the resolution was not adopted. Six senators voted against it while another 6 abstained.

The 8 senators who voted in favor of the resolution were Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III and senators Hontiveros, Grace Poe, Joel Villanueva, and the 4 Liberal Party senators (Senate President Pro-Tempore Franklin Drilon, Senators Francis Pangilinan, Paolo Benigno Aquino IV, and Leila de Lima).

The 6 who voted against it were Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III and senators Richard Gordon, Gregorio Honasan, Panfilo Lacson, Manny Pacquiao, and Cynthia Villar.

The other 6 who abstained were Minority Leader Ralph Recto and senators Juan Edgardo Angara, Nancy Binay, Francis Escudero, Sherwin Gatchalian, and Juan Miguel Zubiri.

The resolution was filed on August 8 – or 3 months before the Supreme Court ruling allowing the burial of Marcos at the LNMB. It was only on Monday, November 14, that they took it up.

On Tuesday, November 8, Hontiveros moved that the chamber act on it, coinciding with the release of the SC decision. But Senate leaders opted to postpone the vote, saying they want to read the High Court’s ruling first. (READ: 'Failing the test of history': Hontiveros on Marcos burial

'Unfit' to be given hero's burial

Authored by Hontiveros, the resolution states that the crimes of Marcos and the human rights violations committed under Martial Law render him unfit to be given a hero’s burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.

Citing the case of Hilao v. Estate of Marcos, Hontiveros said the jury found then that the “estate of defendant Ferdinand Marcos [was] liable to 10,059 plaintiffs for the acts of torture, summary execution, and disappearance.”

This conviction, Hontiveros said, is enough to disqualify Marcos “from being remembered in history as a hero, and from lying beside those who have demonstrated extraordinary heroism and valor in service of the country.”

Allowing a hero’s burial for the late dictator, she added, would only cause further divisiveness and would reopen wounds inflicted on the thousands of victims. – Rappler.com

Camille Elemia

Camille Elemia is Rappler's lead reporter for media, disinformation, and democracy. She won an ILO award in 2017. She received the prestigious Fulbright-Hubert Humphrey fellowship in 2019, allowing her to further study media and politics in the US. Email camille.elemia@rappler.com

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