#BBMismypresident vs #NeverAgain: Battle of hashtags as Bongbong bares 2022 run

John Gabriel Agcaoili, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 05 2021 06:26 PM | Updated as of Oct 06 2021 01:08 AM

Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos co George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News/File
Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos talks to the media at a press conference on August 06, 2018. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA - A war on social media ensued after the son and namesake of late dictator Ferdinand Marcos announced on Tuesday that he will be running for president in the 2022 elections.

Ferdinand Marcos Jr., 64, also known as "Bongbong" or "BBM" announced his intent to run for president on social media platform Facebook, nearly 6 years after he lost the vice presidency to Leni Robredo.

Since his announcement, Filipinos on Twitter expressed their own views on Bongbong's candidacy, with tweets opposing and supporting his bid for Malacañang.

Supporters of Marcos backed their candidate through hashtag #BBMIsMyPresident2022, batting for the late dictator's son and his family, bringing up their supposed accomplishments for the country.

"I believe that BBM is precisely what the country needs. Let us work together to make the Philippines great again," a netizen tweeted.

"The man is as ready as he'll ever be," another one said.

But hashtags #NeverAgain and #MarcosMagnanakaw remained as trending topics since 4 p.m. as activists and netizens brought up the Marcos family's dark history of ruling the country, including killings attributed to government forces and billions of state funds lost to corruption.

"No to the return of the Marcoses to Malacanang!" BAYAN Secretary General Renato Reyes tweeted.

"Bongbong Marcos can never be trusted. Wrote this in 2016. Nothing has changed," Ateneo de Manila University professor Jayeel Cornelio said.

"Imagining every single person who stood and fought for democracy in 1986 at the People Power Revolution reading this and my heart hurts," theater actress Gab Pangilinan wrote on Twitter. 

"Gets ko na yung gravity ng pagsabi ng 'OVER MY DEAD BODY.'" 

Rights group Karapatan also tweeted: "We join hands with the rest of the Filipino people in declaring #NeverAgain to another Marcos or Duterte in Malacañang! #NoDuterteMarcos2022!"

As of writing, hashtags #NeverAgain and #MarcosMagnanakaw have garnered more than 23,000 tweets combined while #BBMIsMyPresident2022 has 22,000 tweets.

The family denies any wrongdoing but Marcos matriarch Imelda has already been found guilty of several counts of graft. 

An anti-graft court earlier ordered a bank initially suspected to be owned by the Marcoses to pay the government around P96 million and $5.4 million in ill-gotten wealth.

In its decision, the Sandiganbayan Second Division required Traders Royal Bank (TRB, now Royal Traders Holding Co., Inc.) to pay the face value of peso-denominated bank certificates amounting to P30 million and P65.98 million in 1974, and 1975 to 1978, respectively. The bank is also ordered to pay another set of bank certificates amounting to $5.435 million, issued from 1975 to 1979.

Last month, the Philippines marked the 49th anniversary since Marcos declared martial law in the country.

Data from the Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) showed that at least 5,040 individuals were detained, 1,217 were victims of summary executions, 892 were massacred and 352 disappeared during the Marcos administration.

The Marcos family 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.

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