Despite the electoral win of president-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) pressed on to perform its mandate by auctioning seized properties from the ill-gotten wealth of the Marcoses.
PCGG was established in the aftermath of the 1986 People Power revolution, where it was mandated by the government to recover the ill–gotten wealth accumulated by the dictator’s family, relatives, and cronies both locally and abroad.
According to the commission, their disposal of Marcos-related properties amounting to P1.2 billion was approved earlier by the Interagency Privatization Council, which is chaired by the Department of Finance. The commission auctioned the properties on different dates this month.
“The privatization or disposal of recovered assets is part of the PCGG’s statutory mandate under Executive Order No. 1, series of 1986,” PCGG Chairperson John Agabyani said.
Auctioned properties include seized properties in cities of Mandaluyong, Caloocan, Tagaytay, Bacolod, Naga, and in municipalities of Mindoro.
The commission was able to generate P120.46 Billion from privatization or disposal of seized assets of the Marcos ill-gotten wealth up until 2020. However, PCGG was not able to contribute to government revenue via privatization of assets last year.
Up until President Rodrigo Duterte’s term, the PCGG was able to recover a total of P170-billion worth of assets from the Marcoses and their cronies. In 2017, the outgoing president announced that the Marcoses were willing to return some of their ill-gotten wealth to help the finances of the government but later backtracked and considered the abolishment of PCGG.
With his preparation for his incoming administration underway, the Marcos camp still deflects issues when asked about their tax liabilities, and other issues including ill-gotten assets, such as questions on the sighting of a missing Picasso painting on their property.
As Marcos Jr. assumes the presidential seat, critics fear that the government will not be able to recover the ill-gotten wealth of the ousted dictator’s family. Moreover, they lament the possibility of PCGG’s abolishment coupled with rampant revisionism on the Marcos family’s theft of Philippine wealth.
Basti Evangelista is a news and opinion writer who focuses on Philippine national politics and sectoral issues. His personal advocacy includes press freedom and social justice.
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