Hypocrites opposing Marcos’ Libingan burial
After graduating from college, I worked as administrative clerk at the President’s Center for Special Studies (PCSS) headed by the late Adrian Cristobal who was also the chair of the Social Security System (SSS)—and a speechwriter and spokesperson of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos and his martial law regime.
I was a national democratic activist, but I married early and had to work to feed my young child then. This letter expresses my reaction to new reports (“Victims recall sexual violence in detention,” Front Page, 2/26/16; “Joma, Marcos victims split on Libingan issue,” Second Front Page, 5/25/16; “Rody wants issue buried but it just refuses to die,” Front Page, 8/10/16) about Bonifacio “Boni” Ilagan and other so-called “activists” opposing the burial of Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
Ilagan is also one of the convenors of the Campaign Against the Return of the Marcoses to Malacañang or Carmma, which opposed the vice presidential candidacy of Bongbong Marcos in the last elections. I saw Ilagan giving media interviews against the dictator Marcos while concealing his long-time association with the latter through the PCSS, as one of the fair-haired boys of Cristobal.
Liza Maza and several so-called activists also served Marcos at PCSS during martial law. Ilagan and other so-called activists who worked as writers of speeches and books (excluding Maza) wined and dined almost every week inside PCSS or SSS. They received fat salaries and rewards such as Bliss condos and well-funded projects. Ilagan was also close to Cristobal’s family and frequented the latter’s house. They even put up a magazine to deodorize Marcos’s wrongdoings.
Is this not the height of hypocrisy for Ilagan to denounce now the horror of martial law while taking part in sowing such horror? Likewise for Liza Maza et al. who still portray themselves as “revolutionaries”—a grave distortion of history.
I am against the burial of Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. He doesn’t deserve that, being the dictator who killed, maimed, tortured, imprisoned several student-activists, workers, peasants, and urban poor Filipinos. My first cousin, a young farmer then, was arrested in the early days of martial law by Marcos’ soldiers in Central Luzon, imprisoned, and later disappeared. His captors told his parents that he had escaped, but his fellow political prisoners said that he was whisked away one night after he was tortured.
My cousin, my childhood buddy, is my inspiration until now as a part-time “nat-dem” activist still dreaming, as I did when I was a full-time activist many years ago, of genuine liberation and a national democratic Philippine society.
Prof. Jose Ma. Sison and Ka Louie Jalandoni, for me, are the genuine revolutionaries, but they should tell Boni Ilagan et al. who want Bongbong to ask forgiveness for the sins of his father to do the same for the role they played in deodorizing the martial law regime.
Never again to martial law and to the return of the Marcoses to Malacañang. To pseudo activists-revolutionaries, stop fooling the Filipino people as Marcos did.
—ROWENA B. REYES, [email protected]
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.