Duterte declares Marcos holiday to mark late-dictator’s 100th birthday

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Marcos holiday
Marcos and the declaration. Photo montage by Rappler.com

MARCOS HOLIDAY: President Duterte has declared September 11 as a ‘special non-working day’ in Ilocos Norte to mark the 100th birthday of former president Ferdinand Marcos.

The proclamation released yesterday (Wednesday, September 6) read: “The Ilocano community has been annually celebrating the birthdate of the late Ferdinand E Marcos and commemorating his life and contributions to national development as a World War II veteran, distinguished legislator and former president.

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“It is but fitting and proper that the people of the Province of Ilocos Norte be given full opportunity to celebrate and participate in the occasion with appropriate ceremonies.”

Marcos holiday
The presidential proclamation naming September 11 as a holiday to celebrate the late-dictator’s birth

Duterte is a known friend and ally of the Marcos family.

Marcos holiday only latest honour

With the backing of the president, Marcos’ body was buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani — or heroes’ cemetery — last November. This was despite strong opposition from critics and human rights groups who described the rushed burial as being “like a thief in the night“.

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The president has also been supportive of Ferdinand “BongBong” Marcos in his bid to overturn the result of last year’s vice-presidential elections and admitted receiving election funding from his sister Imee, the governor of Ilocos Norte.

And as we recently reported, the president has floated the idea of giving the Marcos family immunity from law suits in exchange for the return of some of their ill-gotten wealth.

Ferdinand Edralin Marcos was born on September 11, 1917, in Sarrat, Ilocos Norte, to Mariano Marcos and Josefa Edralin. He claimed an active role in World War II and after working in the law turned to politics.

His rule as president is particularly remembered for the imposition of martial law, a period when thousands were arrested, tortured, killed, or simply disappeared. He was ousted in a people power revolt in February 1986, and died in exile in Hawaii years later.

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