MANILA—Rafael Alunan III, former secretary of Department of Interior and Local Government during Fidel V. Ramos’ (FVR) term as president, on Friday said that Mrs. Marcos signed an agreement in 1992 where she agreed to bury husband Ferdinand sans hero’s burial.
Alunan, who acted as FVR’s designated negotiator in talks between the Marcoses and the government concerning the return of Ferdinand Marcos’ remains from Hawaii to the Philippines, presented a four-point agreement to Mrs. Marcos at her temporary residence in Forbes Park, an agreement she later signed.
The signed agreement stated that Ferdinand Marcos’ remains will only be returned to the Philippines under the conditions that he will be directly returned to Ilocos Norte; will not be paraded in Metro Manila; will only be buried in Ilocos and not in Libingan ng mga Bayani (Heroes’ Cemetery); and will only be given military honors befitting a Major in the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
“Those four points took into consideration the divisiveness of the issue; the potential for bloodshed at the time that we were committed to prevent; the recognition of criminal wrongdoing by his regime that led to his ouster as president and commander-in-chief; and his disqualification for burial honors in the Libingan ng mga Bayani as a logical consequence,” Alunan said.
Despite being former president and World War II veteran, Alunan believes that Marcos is not eligible to a burial in LNMB for violating one of AFP’s regulation that states “personnel who were dishonorably separated/ reverted/ discharged from the service and personnel who were convicted by final judgment of an offense involving moral turpitude” are not qualified to be interred in LNMB.
“The issue is not whether FM deserves to be buried there being a past president and soldier, but whether he meets the qualifications of a “bayani” out of respect for those who lived up to the standards of heroism till the end. His ouster as President and commander-in-chief speaks for itself, and the exception to the rule that disqualifies a candidate should apply here,” Alunan said.
AFP on August 10, Wednesday has formally received the directive for the internment of Marcos in LNMB, a burial that President Rodrigo Duterte steadfastly supported and staunchly defended.
“The signed agreement in 1992 is now on the verge of being broken,” Alunan lamented.