Duterte asks Filipinos to forgive Marcos
President Rodrigo Duterte urged on Friday Filipinos to find forgiveness in their heart following the burial of late President Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
"I would like to pray that everybody will find a space in his heart for forgiveness," Duterte said in an interview after his arrival in Peru where he is attending the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Meeting.
For those who were hurt by the Marcos regime, they could file cases against them, said Duterte.
"For those who have been somehow hurt or endured that they can take some other, for those detained for so long and suffering, they have this option to file a case against the late President Marcos," Duterte said.
Duterte acknowledged that a sin of an individual could not be passed on to other people, even to children.
"You know, these sins cannot beset the children. And liability is always personal. That's a principle of law that we should follow," Duterte said.
The Marcoses allegedly looted $10 billion from the government coffers during the more than two-decade rule in the Philippines until 1986.
The Marcos family decided to bury the remains of the late dictator at the heroes' cemetery on Friday to the surprise of the Filipinos. This followed a 9-5 decision by the Supreme Court's decision allowing the interment of Marcos' remains at heroes cemetery.
Supreme Court spokesman Theodore Te said there is no order barring the internment of Marcos.
‘There is no order prohibiting it because the status quo ante (order) was lifted," Te said.
In a statement, Presidential Communications Office Secretary Martin Andanar said the decision to bury Marcos is "personal to the Marcos family."
"We respect the choice of date of the interment," Andanar said, adding what the government did "was to extend the necessary assistance on matters relating to protocol and honors."
Marcos was given 21 military gun salute. A Philippine flag was draped on the brown coffin containing the Marcos' remains.
Asked if the president was consulted on the burial, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella, in a press conference in Peru, said, "As far as I know he was not. He was not sure about exact date as far as I know."
He denied that the burial was done in a "sneaky" manner considering that Marcos' burial was part of Duterte's campaign promise.
"It is part of the whole process and there is no intent as you say to be sneaky," Abella said.
Thousands of police and military personnel were deployed at the heroes cemetery.
According to some members of the Philippine Marines, who refused to be named, as early as 6am on Friday, about a thousand of them from their headquarters were deployed.
At least 11 fire trucks of the Department of Interior and Local Government were deployed in the area.
Pro and anti-Marcos flocked outside the heroes cemetery. Policemen barred them from getting near the main gate of the cemetery in Taguig City.
"Marcos is not a hero. The young ones will not take this sitting down. We will protest," said Alaysa Escandor, 29.
Escandor, a granddaughter of a doctor who was tortured and killed during martial law, said if Duterte would not listen to the people, "he'll become a dictator."
Jayson Dizon, 21, a legal management student of the De La Salle University, said when he heard that Marcos would be buried at heroes cemetery, he rushed to Taguig to show his protest.
Henry Balonso, 65, called those opposing Marcos' burial as "close-minded."
He said he sympathized with the Marcoses, stressing that the late president "was not corrupt and he did many things for the country, from Aparri to Jolo." Celerina Monte/DMS