We do not forget!
We are saddened by the decision of the Supreme Court to allow the burial of former President Marcos in the Libingan ng mga Bayani. We see this as another step to build the culture of impunity in the country. Marcos is no hero! He should not be presented as one. During Martial Law he had made many people suffer by arbitrary torture and death. He has deprived many poor people of their basic needs while his family and cronies were enriched. We do not forget this! We will not allow that this be forgotten by the future generations in order that the same strong-hand oppression may not happen again.
Those who do wrong should be made accountable. First they should admit the wrong they have done. Up to now this is not being recognized by the Marcos family and his cronies. Then the victims of human rights abuses have not been properly compensated for. This is a matter of justice.
Burying Marcos in the Libingan ng mga Bayani will not bring peace and unity to the country. Peace can only come if there is justice. Justice demands recognition of the harm done to the people and restitution to the victims. We as Church work for peace and unity that is based on truth and justice for all, especially for the poor and the victims.
We are very sad. The burial is an insult to the EDSA spirit. It mocks our fight to restore democracy. We are puzzled and hurt and in great grief. It calls on us for greater courage to make the full truth of the dictatorship known.
Yes, we do not forget and we will not forget!
From the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, November 9, 2016
+SOCRATES B. VILLEGAS
Archbishop of Lingayen-Dagupan
President, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines