Group warns public of another Marcos president

AYOKO maging presidente si Bongbong Marcos, (“I don’t want Bongbong Marcos to be President”)” Trinidad Herrera, Samahan ng mga Ex-Detainee Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto Spokesperson declared today, upon reading news reports that the son of the former dictator, Ferdinand Marcos, has intentions of running for the highest position in the land come 2016.

She added that she does not want a repeat of what happened during martial law. “Kahit na anak lang siya, may stigma na ang pangalang Marcos sa akin. Ayoko nang maulit ang nangyari sa akin at sa libu-libong mga Pilipino nung martial law. (He may just be Marcos’ son, but the name Marcos has a stigma on me. I do not want the thousands of Filipinos to experience the same things that happened to me.”

Herrera, now Board Member of SELDA, was a leader and organizer of Zone One Tondo Organization or ZOTO in the ‘70s. ZOTO was one of the biggest organizations that fought for the rights of the urban poor.
Herrera was arrested thrice –twice in 1973 and once in 1977, when she was raped and electrocuted. She had severe trauma after the torture, which sent her screaming during her sleep.

But Herrera was undaunted. In 1986, when SELDA led in filing the historic class suit of the 9,539 victims of human rights violations under Marcos, she, with six others, were sent to the US to give their testimony.

According to SELDA, it has been 20 years since a district court in Hawaii found Ferdinand Marcos of committing “gross human rights violations” against almost 10,000 Filipinos and ordered the heirs of Marcos to indemnify the victims. But today, Bongbong and his family remain unrepentant. Worse, they are still free from any accountability for the violations and plunder they inflicted on the Filipino people.

“Napatunayan sa korte ng Hawaii na mga state apparatus ni Marcos ang may kinalaman at may gawa sa mga pagpatay, pagdukot, torture at pagkulong sa libu-libong mga Pilipino noon. Kaya hindi maipagkakaila ng pamilya niya ang malaking kasalanang nagawa nila sa sambayanan. (It
was proven at the Hawaii court that Marcos’ state apparatus were responsible in the killing, disappearance, torture and detention of thousands of Filipinos. The Marcoses cannot hide from the crimes they committed against the people),” Herrera stated.

“Nilubog pa niya tayo sa utang, so ano’ng maasahan natin sa anak niya pag naging presidente
ito? (He even left us deep in debt, so what can we expect from his son, if he becomes president?)”

“Ang mga Pilipino kasi, makakalimutin. Marami pa rin ang nag-aakala na masaya ang buhay nung panahon ni Marcos. (Filipinos tend to forget. Many believe that life was better during Marcos’ time.).” she said.

“Asikasong Bongbong ba kamo? Eh goodluck na lang sa mga gustong bumoto kay Bongbong (You say, Bongbong cares? I say goodluck to those who would vote for Bongbong),” Herrera added, referring to Bongbong Marcos’ campaign slogan when he ran for the Senate in 2010.

For the martial law activists, life during the dictatorship was not a joke, as proven by the thousands of Filipinos who sacrificed their lives to fight and oust the dictator.”If we truly want to see an end to that dark period, we must continue to fight for justice and, more importantly, punish those who committed crimes against the Filipinos. We do not want to see another Marcos in Malacanang,” Herrera said.

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