MANILA – Former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. said his family will resume preparations for the burial of their patriarch in the Libingan ng mga Bayani (LNMB) in Taguig City after getting a favorable ruling from the Supreme Court.
Asked if the Marcos family plans to bury the late president’s remains within the year, Marcos told dzMM: “Ay sana naman. Basta tapos na yung desisyon sa Korte Suprema ay siguro maari nang ipagpatuloy na ang lahat ng paghahanda.”
(Hopefully. After the SC released its decision, I think we can finally resume our preparations for the burial.)
The high court voted 9-5 in favor of the burial in LNMB, ending the decades-long of dispute over whether the late dictator deserves a burial at the heroes’ cemetery despite being ousted in a popular revolt in 1986.
The younger Marcos said the family is expected to resume burial preparations, which was disrupted when anti-Marcos groups went to the Supreme Court to block the interment and got a halt order.
“Iyung mga detalye, siguro yung tungkol sa mga logistics, iyan ay napagusapan namin noon pa at pinaghahandaan ngunit natigil nga dahil ang Supreme Court ay nagbigay ng order ng SQAO (status quo ante order) at kaya naman ay tinigil muna namin ang planning,” he said.
(The details, logistics, these were already discussed prior to the status quo ante order of the Supreme Court.)
“Ngayon pagka naging official na, sisimulan na namin ulit kausapin ang mga tumutulong sa atin sa PNP, sa AFP, sa pamahalaan at dedesisyonan kung kailan ang aktwal na date. Sa ngayon ay hindi pa kami -- sa pamilya, hindi pa kami nag-uusap at hindi pa namin napagsabihan ang mga concerned agencies tungkol nga sa aktwal na libingan.”
(Now that the SC ruling has become official, we will resume talking to concerned agencies such as the PNP and AFP. We will then decide the actual date of the burial. The family has not yet notified the concerned agencies of our plans.)
RIGHT TO APPEAL
Atty. Barry Gutierrez, lawyer of one of the groups of anti-Marcos burial petitioners, told ANC that the SC may be asked to extend the halt order on the burial while the ruling is being appealed.
Marcos said he will respect the petitioners’ right to appeal the SC decision.
“Well that's their prerogative. We will just proceed on the basis of the decision that the SC has handed down today,” he said.
In its majority decision, the SC said President Rodrigo Duterte, who backs Marcos’ burial at the heroes’ cemetery, did not commit grave abuse of discretion.
It added, there is no law prohibiting the burial of Marcos' remains at the heroes' cemetery, and that Duterte has the power to reserve for public use and specific public purposes any of the lands under the public domain.
It also said that Marcos, under an Armed Forces of the Philippines regulation, is not disqualified from being buried at the cemetery; he possesses the qualifications to be buried at the cemetery, such as his role as commander-in-chief, a soldier, Medal of Valor awardee, legislator, and secretary of national defense.