Even Marcos critics got invitations from the office of Ilocos Norte 2nd District Rep. Imelda Marcos to the birthday celebration of Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani on Monday, September 11.
Akbayan Rep. Tom Villarin shared a picture of the invitation to media with this message, “Yes I did get an invite and puked on it! With President Duterte’s blessings and absolution of their sins, including his push for their immunity from prosecution, the Marcoses are enjoying their heyday since they were booted out by people power. While Duterte and Marcos party in the Libingan, the blood of thousands killed by both of them cry out for justice! The day of reckoning will come and history will judge harshly those who kill the truth and our own humanity.”
Villarin showed a picture of 2 pieces of paper. one piece of paper read “Please bring this invitation as this will serve as your car pass/gate pass. Thank you.”
The other paper, the actual invitation, reads: Honorable Imelda Romualdez Marcos, her children and grandchidlren request the honor of your presence in the commemoration of the 100th Birth Anniversary of President Ferdinand Edralin Marcos on September 11, 2017. A mass will be held at 9:30 in the morning at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, Bayani Road, Taguig City. to be followed by a short program and lunch.”
The invitation also has RSVP numbers.
The office of Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman also shared with media his own copy of the invitation.
Lagman was the lead petitioner in one of the cases filed at the Supreme Court to stop the burial of Marcos at the LNMB. Lagman said, “To mark the late dictator’s 100th birth anniversary, the Marcos heirs must unequivocally commit the immediate surrender of the totality of the Marcos ill-gotten hoard without conditions, instead of celebrating in the Libingan ng mga Bayani which he does not deserve and does not deserve him. The Marcoses’ shamelessness is beyond words and their sense of entitlement knows no bounds.The burial of the late dictator in the Cemetery of Heroes in itself is the height of desecration of a sacred and hallowed memorial shrine. This planned party celebrating the centennial of his birth defiles the memory of all the legitimate heroes buried in the Libingan ng mga Bayani even as it rubs salt on the still-bleeding wounds of the thousands of victims of the Marcoses’ brutalities, atrocities and unparalleled greed and plunder of the national coffers.Clearly, there is no measure to the depths of depravity that the Marcoses are willing to sink to. In the face of this shamelessness and utter lack of remorse, Filipinos cannot afford not to fight back and be silent.”
Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar is not awaree if the President is invited. “i dont know if the president’s invited personally im not invited i wasnt invited to go to the LNMB” Andanar however sees nothing wrong with it, “the marcos family their entitled to their own event if they want to celebrate the anniversray of former president marcos its upto them”
asked about the criticism that it is distasteful, Andanar said, “again its a prerogative of the marcos family kami naman we’re not connected to the marcoses kami nagtatrabaho llang sa executive department whatever they want to do its their prerogative if they want to celebrate it or not its upto them”
Lagman said, “to mark the occasion on the centennial birth anniversray of the late dictator i think the Marcos heirs should make a very categorical statement that they are committing unequivocally to surrender the entire ill gotten hoard of the marcoses instead of celebrating that birthday at the LNMB which the late rpesident does not deserve.”
Lagman added, “i think its the height of the lack of shame for the marcos family to celebrate the 100th birth anniversray of the late president n the LNMB which was desecrated by his very interment in that memorial park. that would really add more insult to injury to the sovereign filipino people many of whom suffered under ML through violations of human rights as well as grand plunder of the Phl coffers”
Lagman said he won’t go. “you were the first one to tell me i have an invitation you een shwoed me the picture of the invitation it is the first time i know i am invited most probably that is just a courtesy invitation which was not really meant by spirit and intention for me to attend.not at all not at all i have been vigilant against the interment of the late dictator at the LNMB. i have been for all these years against the marcoses with respect to their commission of atricities as well as with respect to their ill gotten hoard and im the pricnipal author of the law for the compensation of the human rights victims among other HRV’s”
House Minority Leader Danilo Suarez echoed Andanar’s sentiments. “hes entitled former president former senator former congressman there maybe some what you call critics how he performed during his time yet we cannot close our eyes to the achievement he ahs done either i dont think theres anything wrong with that thats a good position of those who are anti marcos but this much i can say ive been in public servcie a long time i have to ask them name me one allegation that the late rpesident steal money from the GAA remember during those days ang liliit ng GAA. id like to believe he is good enough to speculate on allegations of gold. maybe it can be proven by fact that he indeed buy those gold mined by Philex Bengute mining company namin were number 5 in the gold producers in the world if hes that sharp so kung yan paniwala nagspeculate siya nothing wrong with that”
asked if Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez was invited and if he will go, the speaker said “No.” via text message.
Marcos’ congressional office has declined to comment on the invitation.
Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate described as the height of callousness the plan of the Marcos family to hold the 100th birthday celebration of the late ousted dictator at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. “Napakalaking insulto para sa mga biktima ng mga paglabag sa karapatang pantao noong Batas Militar at maging sa sambayanang Filipino ang gagawing ito ng mga Marcoses. Gusto talaga nilang baguhin ang husga ng kasaysayan sa diktador na si Ferdinand Marcos at kanilang pamilya. Mukhang desidido ding muling makabalik sa Malakanyang ang mga Marcos at parte ito sa planong iyon,” said the progressive solon.”Maglulunsad ang Bayan Muna ng kilos-protesta sa araw na ito upang kondenahin ang muling pamamayagpag ng mga Marcos at manawagan para sa katarungan sa kanilang mga biktima,”
Governor Imee Marcos has also not yet issued a statement.
But separately, Opening the “Marcos 100 Forum: The North Remembers” celebrating the centennial year of Former President Ferdinand E. Marcos (FEM), Ilocos Norte Governor Imee R. Marcos told people, “Winter has not come yet” for her father’s legacy.
The forum, hosted at the Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) Teatro Ilocandia from September 8-9, is an effort of the Marcos family to make this year’s commemoration of their patriarch’s birthday mirror his character: “very cerebral, reflective, and mindful.”
It contrasts previous celebrations of FEM’s birthday every September 11, which had involved parades, flash mobs, concerts, and other festivities. Governor Marcos explained, “Gawin natin ang gusto ng tanging ama ko: simple, diretsuhin, payak, intelektwal, at palaisipan,” quipping that past activities had been in favor of her, her mother’s, and brother’s preferences.
She also thanked President Rodrigo R. Duterte for issuing Proclamation No. 310, which declares September 11 (this Monday) as a special non-working holiday in Ilocos Norte.
Preceding the forum, the “Marcos Pa Rin!” Literary and Arts Festival was held (September 6-7), involving local students in competitions like oration, storytelling, debate, singing, and a quiz show, to encourage appreciation of the intellectual and cultural.
“Today we launch the series of lectures and fora that will define Marcos at 100 in this very reflective effort in what, finally, is the Marcos legacy. It shall also be, in addition to being austere and intellectual, most heartfelt and compassionate,” Governor Marcos said, sharing that medical services and agricultural and fishery programs would be conducted also in honor of FEM’s centenary.
“The North remembers,” she said, “Ferdinand E. Marcos is, after all, every Ilocano. The story of every Filipino is embedded in that biography of being born of an arid and harsh landscape, struggling through life and every adversity, and finally coming out triumphant.”
Born in the town of Sarrat, Ilocos Norte, her father had served in the Japanese War and risen through political ranks, first as congressman, then senator and senate president, and later becoming the longest-serving president in Philippine history.
Gracing the forum as lecturers are De La Salle University (DLSU) Professor Antonio P. Contreras; Former Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) President Dr. Raul M. Sunico; UP Prof. Clarita R. Carlos; lawyer Estelito P. Mendoza, solicitor-general during the FEM presidency; Marcos’ former Budget and Education Secretary Dr. Jaime C. Laya; and the former president’s namesake, Former Senator Ferdinand “Bong Bong” R. Marcos Jr.
Discussions revolve around Marcos’ sense and narrative of nationalism; the “Golden Era” of arts and culture during his administration; his foreign policy; FEM’s martial law; the Philippine economy during that time; and the barangay in institution-building.
“History is not done with me yet,” Governor Marcos quoted her father’s words when the family was distraught upon leaving the Philippines in 1986.
“Why is it that this debate, this argument about who President Marcos is, continues to burn, unabated, a hundred years after his birth? What is his legacy? What do we bear today that bears his mark and will have changed the Filipino people forever and made the Ilocanos what they are today?”