Dispatch from Crame No. 902: Sen. Leila M. de Lima on the Bill Memorializing Dictator Ferdinand Marcos


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Anything about past presidents is not a local concern; it always has national significance. Treating House Bill No. 7137 on the Ferdinand Marcos Day as fait accompli for being a local bill and merely having local application is an act of cowardice that glosses over a dark part of our history and blots out the memory of an entire generation that suffered at the hands of an ignominious dictator.

The Marcos dictatorship was the darkest years in our postcolonial history. The staggering amount plundered and the thousands of people tortured, disappeared and murdered are well-documented and cannot be erased nor revised.

Walang lugar sa ating bansa na ipinagdiriwang ang isang malaking kahihiyan sa ating dangal at bangungot sa ating kasaysayan. Uulitin ko, kahihiyan at bangungot.

To commemorate a public figure is to venerate or emulate his exemplary qualities. Ano ang tutularan sa isang diktador? Ang mang-abuso, magnakaw at pumatay?

The Province of Ilocos Norte has produced many reputable historical figures worthy of acclaim for their selfless contributions to the country’s dignity and heritage. It is a shame to their names and acts of great bravery, and to the people of Ilocos Norte and their long history of triumphs fighting against colonial powers and abuses, that a dictator, a national disgrace, will be memorialized in the province instead of this breed of courageous, faithful and uncorrupted Ilocanos.

The opportunist move of distorting history achieves nothing but to further add insult to injury, to further offend and abuse the memories of the generation that survived the Marcos tyranny, and ignite people’s pent-up fury. Wrong move! ###

(Access the handwritten version of Dispatch from Crame No. 902, here: https://issuu.com/senatorleilam.delima/docs/dispatch_902)

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