P100-B worth of Marcos assets still ‘under litigation’

Published October 6, 2020, 4:19 PM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

Almost P100 billion worth of Marcos assets supposedly amassed during the 20-year regime of the late dictator Ferdinand E. Marcos remain “under  litigation.”

Ferdinand Marcos with wife, Imelda, on Feb. 16, 1986, after his disputed victory in the presidential elections held on Feb. 7. He was ousted later in the month
(Agence France-Presse / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

This was relayed by Bulacan 1st District Rep. Jose Antonio Sy-Avarado to his colleagues during the House of Representatives’ plenary debates on the Department of Justice’s proposed budget for 2021 after Bayan Muna partylist Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate asked for an update on the government ’s efforts to run after the supposed ill-gotten wealth of Marcoses and their cronies. 

“Sa panahong ito, ang total value ng pinaglalabanan pa o ang total value of assets under litigation ay kulang (sa) P100 billion  o P99.6 billion. Mayroon pa pong  inaasikasong 88 cases ang PCGG (Presidential Commission on Good Government), Mr. Speaker,” said the vice chairperson of the House Committee on Appropriations who defended the DOJ’s spending proposal for next year. 

(During this time, the total value of assets under litigation is below P100 billion or P99.6 billion. There are 88 cases now being handled by the PCGG.)

He said included in the 88 cases being handled by the PCG is the Marcos jewelry collections amounting to P1.8 billion.

Zarate then asked Sy-Alvarado his comment on perception that government is “not serious” in running after the alleged ill-gotten wealth.

“Masasabi po natin na totoo ang hangarin ng PCGG, bagamat nais po ng bawat isa na pabilisin ang prosesong ito para maging patas sa taong bayan, gayundin po sa pamilyang Marcos,” Sy-Alvarado said.

(We can say that the PCGG is sincere in its mandate, each one of us want to expedite the process so that it will be fair for the people as well to the Marcos family.) 

“Kaya ko nasabing patas sapagkat karapatan din naman ng pamilyang Marcos na malinis ang kanilang pangalan sakali na hindi naman totoo na itong mga bagay ito ay kanilang ninakaw,” he further explained. 

(I said fairness because it is also the right of the Marcos family to clear their name just in case it is untrue that they amassed these assets.)

Sy-Alvarado said in case, it is proven that that P99.6 billion is part of the supposed ill-gotten heath, such assets should be turned over to the government to finance programs that would improve the lives of the people, especially the poor. 

Zarate said three decades have passed and almost only half of the “plundered” wealth had been recovered from the Marcoses.  

He even raised eyebrows at “circulating revisionist narratives” that spread false information on what really happened during the martial law. 

The Makabayan lawmaker said there is no truth to such narratives that absolved the Marcos’ regime from its sins, particularly the human rights violations.

“Hindi totoo yan dahil tayo mismo sa Kongreso at sa ilang mga desisyon ng Korte Suprema (It is not true because here in Congress and in some decisions of the Supreme Court), it was already affirmed that there were human rights violations, there were ill-gotten wealth, there are still ill-gotten wealth that have to be recovered,” he pointed out.