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Palace hopes for healing

Malacañang has bowed to the Supreme Court decision allowing the burial of President Ferdinand E. Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani in Taguig City, saying it hopes the nation would now “move forward.”

“We acknowledge the decision of the Supreme Court to have the remains of former President Ferdinand Marcos buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani as it is the final arbiter of all legal questions,” presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said in a statement.

“We hope the matter will finally be laid to rest, and that the nation finds the wherewithal to move forward and to continue forging a nation that is peaceable, just, and fair to all,” Abella added.

Three senators were disappointed by the decision.

Sen. Bam Aquino said he is gravely disappointed by the decision to bury a “corrupt and ruthless dictator” at the Libingan ng mga Bayani but said he would respect the decision of the High Court.

“Though we must respect the outcome, my heart goes out to the thousands of victims during the darkest years in Philippine history,” Aquino said.

“We will carry on our work with the Department of Education to ensure that the truth about Martial Law is effectively taught in our schools,” said the senator, nephew of the late Sen. Benigno S. Aquino Jr., an icon of democracy who opposed and criticized the Marcos regime.

“With this decision, we need to be even more vigilant that the mistakes of the past are not repeated. Never again,” he said.

Sen. Risa Hontiveros said the SC has miserably failed the test of history and “broken our hearts.”

Hontiveros said that by allowing the remains of the late dictator to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, the High Tribunal has failed to protect the truth from the Marcoses’ fictional universe.

“The decision intends to effectively wipe the Marcos slate clean and negate the sacrifices of the thousands of brave souls who fought and suffered under the brutal Marcos dictatorship,” Hontiveros said in a statement.

Sen. Leila M. de Lima said the decision is another insulting and unjust blow to the thousands of victims of human rights violations during Martial Law.

“It is lamentable that, while courts in foreign jurisdictions have managed to deliver justice for them, their own court of Last Recourse has failed them,” said De Lima.

However, Sen. Gregorio B. Honasan II said that following the SC decision, now is the best time for Filipinos to unite and uphold the rule of law.

“As we engage al hands, the public and private sector, the entire citizenry to help repair damaged institutions; now is as good a time as any to strengthen the rule of law and due process to help achieve political unity, social cohesion and economic prosperity,” Honasan said. (GENALYN D. KABILING • HANNAH L. TORREGOZA)