"Marcos Jr. used the world stage at the UN General Assembly to talk about lofty universal ideals and principles that he and his family refuse to live by. Fifty years after his dictator-father’s martial law, he continues to justify the human rights violations committed during martial law, while keeping the billions of people’s money stolen by his family and their cronies," said Karapatan’s Secretary-General Cristina Palabay.
"It is a grand show of hypocrisy, another act meant to deodorize and atrocious crimes of plunder, massive human rights violations, and exploitation of the Filipino people," she added.
Speaking before world leaders on Tuesday, President Marcos once again repeated his presidential campaign's call for "unity". Every nation must rally in unison as it moves to shape the future of the world, he said.
"The peoples of the world look to their leaders, to us, to make into reality these aspirations for our future. We must not fail them. And if we stand together, we will not fail them. If we stand together, we can only succeed."
Karapatan took offense over Marcos’s continued deflection of human rights violations during the first months of his new administration, and the continuing prevalence of impunity in the country.
While the president alluded to the UN Joint Program on Human Rights, an independent body created by the UN Human Rights Commission to help institutions in the Philippines protect human rights, Karapatan said that continuing the draconian policies of the Duterte administration cannot hide the fact that Marcos does not intend to improve the human rights situation in the country.
To date, more than 800 have been recorded as political prisoners, including activists Adora Faye de Vera and Atel Hijos, an all-time high.
Palabay also belied Marcos’s claim that there is a "functioning judiciary" in the country, as the majority of the extrajudicial killings and human rights violations during the Rodrigo Duterte administration have yet to be rendered justice.
"Marcos Jr.’s claims of a ‘functioning judiciary’ is a big lie, considering how domestic redress mechanisms have remained ineffective in delivering justice and exacting accountability, while efforts toward investigations of the International Criminal Court are being rejected."
Marvin Joseph Ang is a news and creative writer who follows developments on politics, democracy, and popular culture. He advocates for a free press and national democracy. Follow him on Twitter at @marvs30ang for latest news and updates. The views expressed are his own.