The son of late dictator Ferdinand Marcos – BongBong Marcos – claims that Filipinos are no longer concerned about human rights abuses committed under his father’s rule.
Many are angered by his statement as ongoing ‘human rights’ and reparations have been overlooked for the past 29 years since the end Marcos’s dictatorship.
BongBong made the statement just two days after announcing his candidacy for vice president.
Marcos said that today Filipinos are more concerned about their livelihood, crime and other day-to-day problems.
Retired Commission on Human Right Chairwoman Loretta Ann Rosales, said she was looking over a law passed in 2013 recognising and compensating victims of human rights abuses during the 14 years of martial law under Ferdinand Marcos.
Rosales remembers the Marcos era all to well, as she was tortured and detained during martial law.
Following his announcement that he will run for the country’s second highest office, the 58-year-old senator acknowledged that there had been many human rights violations charges against his father but Filipinos “are not concerned about that” these days.
“They are concerned about their lives today,” he said. “We want answers. Why are there drugs in our streets? Why is the crime rate going up at an alarming rate? Why is our educational sector miserable? Why is the distribution of wealth not happening? Why is the government not doing anything about it? Why is there no infrastructure development? Why is there no agricultural development? This is what people are worried about.”
He added that the Marcos name would not be a hindrance to his election campaign.
“I am the luckiest person that I know, and being a Marcos is part of that,” he said. “I have never felt it to be a burden. I have only felt it to be an advantage, a blessing, and I am very thankful that I am a Marcos.
“In my heart of hearts, I truly believe that I was put on this earth to serve, to be a public servant and that is what I will continue to do until the day that I die,” he said.
Rosales was unhappy BongBong’s statements, saying: “The mindset he instills among the people is to keep them ignorant of the truth. It is the height of political arrogance and elitism, so much like his father.”
Bonifacio Ilagan, vice chairman of Selda, a group of former political detainees, said: “Much of the Marcos regime is still with us,” alleging human rights are still being violated.
He added that the vice presidential aspiration of Marcos Jr. showed the “Marcoses’ delusion of returning to power to re-establish their brand of anti-people and fascist rule.”
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