More than a thousand people attended that anti-Marcos burial at Libingan ng mga Bayani (National Heroes’ Cemetery) protest rally at Rizal Park (Luneta) this Friday, August 14 despite the heavy rain. But did you know that a dog of the late President Corazon “Cory” Aquino was also buried there and not a single person has protested?
As featured in GMA News, among those who attended the said event include former DILG Secretary Manuel Roxas, Senator Leila De Lima, Senator Risa Hontiveros, Senator Kiko Pangilinan, Senator Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV, former CHR (Commission on Human Rights) chairperson Etta Rosales,former Cong. Walden Bello, and Prof. Winnie Monsod.
Nevertheless, Vice President Leni Robredo, who is also strongly against it, was not present. As each of them spoke on stage, the crowd which includes human rights groups and Martial Law victims chanted, “Marcos is not a hero!” Generally speaking, the said rally was peaceful and there were no police barricades as promised by President Rodrigo Duterte.
The issue of the burial of the late President Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani is not new. It was not allowed by the past presidents Cory Aquino, Fidel V. Ramos, Joseph “Erap” Estrada, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, and Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III. Only Duterte, a known friend of the Marcos family, was in favor even during his presidential campaign.
In a press release last May, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) revealed the personalities who are allowed to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. This includes former presidents and their wives, war veterans, secretaries of national defense and AFP chiefs of staff and generals, and national artists. The AFP noted that Marcos is more then qualified.
The late President Marcos died on September 28, 1989 while on exile in Hawaii, six years after he was overthrown via EDSA People Power 1, and was replaced by Cory Aquino. But in a statement, former First Lady Imelda Marcos was quoted as saying, “Dogs have been buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. Why not Marcos? He too, is a hero.”
According to an old newspaper we found, and was also mentioned at Philstar, then-President Cory Aquino ordered the burial of a security bomb-sniffing dog (Labrador) of her Presidential Security Group (PSG) at the Libingan ng mga Bayani in March 1992. Cory’s dog reportedly died of stomach illness, and was even given military honors. And yes, not a single human being or cat protested that time.