“Like a thief in the night,” began Philippine vice president Leni Robredo’s statement denouncing the sneaky “surprise burial” of Ferdinand Marcos earlier today.
The nation’s kleptocratic dictator died in 1989. Every sitting president since then has refused to give Marcos the traditional honor of burial in Manila’s Cemetery of the Heroes, citing 75,000 human rights cases against him and the $10 billion plundered from the nation’s coffers by his family and cronies. Until current president Rodrigo Duterte, who championed the idea of burying Marcos, and fended off fervent anti-Marcos protests and law suits in Manila.
“At last, on this day, my father’s last wish came true,” said Marcos’s daughter Imee to the press after his burial. “From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you… First of all, to president Duterte, who suggested it to the Supreme Court.”
But plenty of Filipinos feel that Duterte made the wrong choice. “Marcos was a thief, a murderer and a dictator. He is no hero,” Robredo wrote in the strongly-worded statement published on her Twitter and Facebook account.
“The Marcos family deliberately hid the information of burying former President Marcos today from the Filipino people…This is nothing new to the Marcoses—they who had hidden wealth, hidden human rights abuses, and now, a hidden burial.”
A human rights lawyer who narrowly defeated Marcos’s son Ferdinand Jr. (Bongbong) in the vice presidential race, Robredo’s statement is a rejection of her boss Rodrigo Duterte’s mandate. She followed her dig at him by retweeting her daughter who populated her account with pictures of dead activists murdered during Marcos’s bloody martial law regime.