Petition filed in Philippines after dictator’s ‘hero’ burial
Victims of human rights abuse who suffered during the rule of Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos have filed petitions asking the Supreme Court to order the exhumation of his remains that were buried last week at the country’s Heroes’ Cemetery.
They also want the court to hold officials and his heirs in contempt for carrying out the burial before the court heard final appeals against it.
Former President Fidel Ramos, who played a key role in the peaceful army-backed revolt that ousted Marcos in 1986, called the former leader’s burial at the military-run cemetery “an insult” to the sacrifices of soldiers and veterans.
Left-wing former lawmaker Saturnino Ocampo and other activists urged the court to hold Marcos’ widow Imelda, their three children, Defence Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and two military officials in contempt for “the hasty, shady and tricky” burial on Friday of the long-dead president at the Heroes’ Cemetery.
The petition said they should be fined and detained for mocking the legal process that gave petitioners 15 days to appeal the court’s November 8 ruling allowing the burial.
Opposition leader Edcel Lagman, who represents another group of petitioners, sought a court order to have the remains exhumed “because the hasty and surreptitious interment was premature, void and irregular”.
He asked that the remains be examined to determine if they are not a wax replica.
The secrecy-shrouded burial at the cemetery reserved for presidents, soldiers and national artists shocked victims, prompting street protests
Marcos’ rule was marked by massive rights violations and plunder. After being ousted in 1986, he flew to Hawaii, where he lived until he died in 1989.
LEGAL FIGHT: Abuse victims after signing the Marcos petition