- The Supreme Court conducts the second round of oral arguments on Late President Ferdinand Marcos' burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani
- Government lawyers are expected to defend the decision of President Rodrigo Duterte to bury the late president at the Libingan
- The late President was accused of committing crimes during his term such as massive human rights violation and amassing ill-gotten wealth
The Supreme Court resumes the oral arguments on the late President Ferdinand Marcos' burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani on Wednesday, Sept. 7, where government lawyers will be defending President Rodrigo Duterte's decision to allow the hero burial.
Solicitor General Jose Calida will be leading the government in the arguments that will tackle the late president's service and his being a war soldier. Calida is expected to argue that the strongman should be given the hero burial despite petitions that discuss the strongman's crimes during his term.
The OSG said: "The Libingan is a national shrine for military memorials. As such, any president, commander-in-chief, war veteran or Medal of Valor awardee may be buried therein. These are indelible facts that are adequate reasons for a person to be interred in the Libingan in the case of former President Marcos, perhaps the only reasons."
Late President Marcos was accused to have committed massive violations of human rights and amassing ill-gotten wealth in his 20 years of presidency.
Petitioners, however, cited Republic Act 289, saying that only those who can be inspirations and models for emulation are deserving to be buried at te Libingan ng mga Bayani.
Some justices mentioned concerns about the lack of guidelines regarding who can be considered as heroes and who could be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
Associate Justice Teresita De Castro stated: "Even spouses of Secretaries of National Defense are allowed to be buried there. Are they heroes? Can we say there are guidelines? There's not even a body which will determine who are heroes, who should avail of this privilege to be buried in the Libingan ng mga Bayani. Is the Court (SC) the one to determine, in the absence of any guidelines who are the bayani?"
Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio argued that the former president was not qualified for a hero burial because he was "dishonorably discharged" during his presidency when he was ousted during People Power revolt in 1986 which according to Carpio, is a "sovereign act of the people."
The first round of the oral arguments happened last week, August 31.