MANILA—Vice presidential aspirant Lito Atienza on Friday opposed the return of Marcoses to Malacañang, saying the country suffered under the 20-year authoritarian rule of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos.
"Naka-20 years na kayo. Naghirap na ang bayan dahil sa inyo. Namarkahan na nga tayo sa buong kahihiyan ng Pilipinas. We've had the most corrupt president ever. At ngayon ibabalik natin ang pamilya?" he told TeleRadyo.
While he has nothing against the family, Atienza said Filipinos should not forget the Marcos regime.
"Hindi ako nagdadala ng sama ng loob or anything. Pero iba 'yung pinatawad at iba 'yung kalimutan na natin, balik tayo sa dati, balik kayo sa Malacañang. Ayaw na ayaw ko nun," he said.
In the interview, Atienza compared his running mate, presidential aspirant Manny Pacquiao, to Marcos.
"Si Manny nagbigay ng karangalan. He brought fame to the Filipinos all over the world. Si Marcos brought shame. Kahihiyan ang binigay sa atin. So why would you want him back?" he said.
The son and namesake of the late dictator is running for the country's highest post in this year's elections.
The Marcos regime, considered as the darkest chapter in Philippine history, saw thousands of people imprisoned, tortured, and killed.
Reports from global human rights watchdog Amnesty International said around 100,000 people were victims of martial law, with 3,000 killed, 34,000 tortured and 70,000 arrested.
The Marcoses also amassed an estimated $5 to $10 billion or more than P500 billion in ill-gotten wealth, based on a study of the World Bank-United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime’s Stolen Asset Recovery report.
The Philippine Commission on Good Government, the agency tasked with recovering billions of dollars plundered by Marcos and his allies, had recovered a total of P170 billion in the past 30 years.