The son of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos asked Filipinos to give some “balance” in commemorating the anniversary of Martial Law declaration in 1972.
On its 40th anniversary, Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos appealed for the public to put some “perspective" in what he said was a "one-sided commemoration of Martial Law anniversary.”
“On a more personal level, I remember people saying how thankful they were for the relative peace and order that followed Martial law,” Marcos said.
In his Facebook status posted early Friday morning, Marcos said Martial law brought back PH's positive image worldwide, which revived the tourism industry in the 70s.
He claimed Martial Law dismantled private armies, contained price fluctuations due to price ceilings, and even established rice self-sufficiency.
“I mention these to give some balance to the one-sided version that has been spewed out by the few that control media over the last couple of decades as can be seen up to this day,” Marcos clarified.
“Most of what we hear today are self-serving statements by politicians, self-aggrandizement narratives, pompous declarations, and political posturing and propaganda,” he added.
Marcos also cited World Bank figures, which that the Philippines’ Gross Domestic Product (GDP) rate stood at 8.9 percent in 1973 before taking a dip to below 5 percent as a result of the oil embargo in 1974.
He took note that the same figures show a negative growth in 1984 in the wake of his father’s rival, the late Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. 's assassination in August of 1983.
Pointing he was never consulted on the matter, Marcos recalled he was only 15 years old studying in United Kingdom when he learned about Martial Law.
But the senator clarified he was already aware of the prevailing lawlessness, fire-arms proliferation in the country, violent demonstrations, bombings, and spiking crime rate.
Marcos still refused to join the blame game, but instead eyes solutions to problems still hounding the country.
“Blaming others and finding scapegoats are not solutions to poverty, rising prices, criminality, the insurgency, and so on. And too much politics leaves no room for leadership,” Marcos said.
“We cannot change yesterday any more than we can foretell what the morrow will bring. However, we can shape our future by what we do today,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Commission on Human Rights stressed the importance of remembering Martial Law in the face of attempts "to rewrite that dark period in our history to portray it as the best thing that ever happened to the Philippines."
In a statement, CHR commissioner Jose Manuel Mamauag said some "political sectors" are trying to glorify Martial Law. That, he said, "is a pernicious attempt to escape accountability (and) to deny the victims their right to justice and compensation." CHR said there is a need to uphold historical truth on abuses under then President Ferdinand Marcos. "What is worse than plagiarism? It is rewriting history," Mamauag said.
Akbayan party-list, which has been pushing to make lessons on Martial Law atrocities a mandatory part of the education system, tagged the Marcoses as historical revisionists in July.
"The Marcoses are engaged in an aggressive campaign to revise history to their favor. They are exploiting the young generation’s lack of knowledge of the Marcos years to paint a rosy historical account of the dictatorship. For the sake of those who were killed, abused and incarcerated for standing up against tyranny, we must not let them succeed," Akbayan vice chair Marie Chris Cabreros had said.
Akbayan said the Marcos dictatorship is to blame for 3,257 murders, 35,000 torture cases, and 70,000 incarcerations.
Fourteen early winners in the party-list race have been named Friday even as the protracted count of votes continues.