Agree? Former President Marcos should be buried at the Libingan ng Bayani (updated)

Senator Bongbong Marcos brought the issue regarding his late father’s burial at the Libingan Ng Mga Bayani. It has once again resurfaced mainly because Gen Angelo Reyes recently got buried there. As the senator said, “his burial is obviously as controversial as it was since his passing. Clearly, as pointed out by at least two of my colleagues at the Senate, the late President, by virtue of his services as a soldier during World War II and his being a former commander-in-chief and former President of the Republic, twice elected, is entitled to a state burial, no less. ”

As I curated the twitter reactions (from February 13), I noted a greater majority agreed that the former president should be buried in the Libingan ng Bayani. As of 2:00 PM, I counted 58 who agreed, and 14 who disagreed. @cesdrilon had closer margins :

Added the new tweets to informal survey, should FM be buried in Libingan ng mga Bayani? Agree 53, Disagree 49.

Those who agreed felt that he “should be buried in the Libingan ng mga Bayani because he was once the president of this country. Period.” One who disagreed said that “As a military man no basis for Marcos in Libingan. As a president turned dictator, none too. So what’s argument again?” Another would agree under certain conditions:

On 3 conditions: 1.The Libingan ng mga Bayani is renamed to Libingan ng mga Kurakot at mga Walang Hiya. 2.GMA is buried with him-alive.

Someone also mentioned that “allowing Marcos to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani is a clear sign of emotional and political maturity for this country.”

Why indeed should we not bury former President Ferdinand Marcos at the Fort McKinley Libingan ng mga Bayani?, asks Benign0

So why not? He was President of the Philippines for two decades after all and, like Angelo Reyes, was never convicted for his crimes. Indeed, his son is a Philippine Senator and his wife, former First Lady Imelda Marcos is a member of the House of Representatives. As far as I can tell, none of Marcos’s top military officers or Cabinet members were taken to account for the alleged “crimes” perpetrated during his 20-year rule. Among the architects of the much maligned Martial Law of the 70’s can be counted former President Fidel Ramos who is widely respected for the administration he ran in the 90’s. Marcos’s Minister of Defense and right-hand-man at the height of his dictatorship, Juan Ponce Enrile, is now Senate President.

Indeed, take stock of the political landscape of today and the who’s-who of the folks in power today with eyes uncoloured by the Aquinoist propaganda that dominated much of the last 25 years, and one would be hard-pressed to imagine Ferdinand Marcos as the bad guy he is made out to be.

I am quite ambivalent with this burial. Angelo Reyes is not a hero. President Marcos is a former president. I believe the former president deserves to be buried there. I also remember the foreign debts and deaths during the Marcos regime .

When the Marcoses fled Malacañang in February 1986 during the first People Power, the country had a foreign debt of $28 billion. Following our loan schedule, Filipino taxpayers will pay for the foreign debts of Marcos until 2025 – 59 years after he assumed office and 39 years after he was kicked out. The $28 million debt left behind by the former president did not go to infrastructure development projects or social programs of government. It has been estimated that Marcos Sr. pocketed around 33 percent of the country’s total borrowings during his term. This amount translates to more than $8 billion.

Here are some of the tweets I curated on this issue: