The President could not simply absolve Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee Marcos and former Senator Bongbong Marcos Jr. and describe them as “sinless” for alleged human rights abuses. They continue to benefit from the ill-gotten wealth of their father, late Ferdinand Marcos, said opposition lawmaker Albay 1st District Rep. Edcel Lagman said Saturday.
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“Although they were teenagers when martial law was declared in September 1972, they attained the age of majority shortly after the proclamation of martial law and they were already adults during the height of the martial law regime,” Lagman said. In an interview over state-run PTV 4, Du30 said that someone should not be held accountable for the sins someone else committed.
Lagman, a martial law victim, said that Imee and Ferdinand Jr. celebrated their 18th birthdays in 1973 and 1975, respectively. They were “old enough when the documented atrocities and plunder were committed. They were allegedly by the late Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos.”
The lawmaker recounts that Imee heads the Kabataang Barangay. It is the Marcosian counterpart of today’s Sangguniang Kabataan. That was accused of involvement in the 1977 murder of Archimedes Trajano, a Mapua Institute of Technology student. Trajano questioned her credentials. On August 31, 1977, he asked during an open forum at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila her capacity to lead the national youth organization. She is only the presidential daughter, he added. Trajano was found dead two days later with signs of torture.
Human Rights as an Excuse
The Hawaii District Court awarded $4.16 million to the Trajano family in 1991. It was affirmed by the US Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit Court in 1992. Lagman said the effort of the Trajano family to enforce in the Philippines the foreign judgment was quashed by the Philippine Supreme Court. This is a mere technicality of a defective substituted service of summons to Imee. She claimed that she was then a resident of Singapore when the summons was served at the Alexandra Homes in Pasig City, her known address at that time. Perhaps Lagman forgets the rights for innocence until proven guilty.