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Return of Marcos wealth under study

By: Genalyn Kabiling

National interest and legal compliance will be the main considerations of President Duterte in reviewing the offer of the Marcos family to return its alleged ill-gotten wealth to the government, Malacañang assured Friday.

Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said the proposed return of the Marcos wealth is still under study by the President in the wake of doubts raised by some groups about the supposed offer.

“We understand that certain parties have indicated to the President that there may be an opportunity for the assets of the Marcos family to be turned over to the Republic. The President is studying how best to proceed in a manner that will advance the nation’s interest and comply with the law,” Abella said.

“As this matter becomes clearer, we will advise what further action will be taken to finally obtain justice,” he added.

Early this week, President Duterte bared that the Marcos family is ready to return the wealth in question, including a “few gold bars,” to help the government contain its growing budget deficit.

Duterte said he would accept the explanation of the Marcoses about the wealth regardless if it is true or not. A small team will be formed by the President to negotiate with the Marcoses about the return of the wealth.

Duterte said he has “the best interests of the Filipinos in mind, which is, how our people would benefit from the recovery of the Marcos wealth.”

Several lawmakers and other groups however have slammed the Marcos’ offer to give back only some of their ill-gotten wealth, insisting they must return everything to the national government and suffer legal consequences.