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The Supreme Court (SC) decided yesterday to conduct oral argument on Wednesday next week on the petition that seek to stop the burial of the late former President Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (LNMB) in Taguig City.
Before the oral argument, however, the SC – in a resolution issued during its full court session – directed the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Department of National Defense (DND) to comment in five days on the petition filed by a group whose members call themselves victims of torture and illegal detention during the martial law regime.
The SC acted on the petitions filed by the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) and the Samahan ng Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detention at Aresto (SELDA).
This developed as another petition was filed challenging the burial of the late president at the LNMB.
In a petition, the members of the Families of Victims of Involuntary Disappearance (FIND) raised almost the same issues at those aired by Bayan and SELDA and also pleaded for a temporary restraining order (TRO).
The new petition is expected to be included in the oral arguments set next week. Bayan and SELDA’s petition claimed that Marcos’ burial at the LNMB would violate two laws, the regulations of the AFP, and an agreement signed in 1993.
‘’The interment of the remains of Marcos at the LNMB with the honors that supposedly befit only Filipino Heroes with overall unblemished integrity and dignity is contrary to the Constitution,’’ their petition stated.
Named respondents were Rear Admiral Ernesto Enriquez, AFP Deputy Chief of Staff for Reservist and Retiree; AFP Chief of Staff General Ricardo Visaya; Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana; and the Marcos heirs.
The petitioners said that the respondents abused their discretion in allowing the burial of the late President at the LNMB through a memorandum issued on Aug. 7 by Lorenzana. (Rey Panaligan)