November 22, 2016
Condemn the perverse Marcos hero’s burial!
Justice for all Martial Law victims!
Health Alliance for Democracy (HEAD) condemns in the strongest terms the hero’s burial of dictator Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng Mga Bayani. “The covert burial spits in the face of the thousands of activists, Filipinos, martyred to overthrow the Marcos dictatorship thirty years prior,” said HEAD Secretary-General Dr. Joseph Carabeo.
“Duterte has made clear through his statements that his endorsement of the burial is a form of reparation to the Marcoses for their assistance in his presidential campaign,” added Dr. Carabeo. “How fortunate for this family to receive reparation when the Martial Law victims have not.We urge President Duterte to veer away from these liars, criminals and plunderers, and instead heed the call of delivering justice to the Filipino people.”
“It should also be made clear that the post-Marcos administrations are equally accountable for the Marcos’ return to power – the two Aquino presidents especially, who used for themselves the Martial Law narrative as political capital to establish their own regimes,”Carabeo quipped. “Despite the boundless resources at their disposal, they did not do anything so that the former president himself and those complicit to his crimes were punished or jailed. These are the same forces who withheld justice to the Martial Law victims, and these are the same opportunistic hypocrites who should now be silenced.”
The health sector is no stranger to the violence of the Marcos regime, suffering the loss of its colleagues Dr. Johnny Escandor and Dr. Bobby Dela Paz, both community doctors, to brutal torture and murder by state forces. They are among the many victims who have yet to see justice despite years of waiting.
On November 25, HEAD and other health groups will join the massive protest action to be led byMartial Law victims and the youth. “It is an opportunity for both old and young generations from different walks of life to unite and rage, and to protest against the restoration of the Marcoses to power,” Carabeo said. “We invite our fellow health workers, doctors, nurses, community health workers and other health professionals in this historic activity.”
Decades since the Marcos regime, much of the people’s right to health requires assertion from the people, as it can only be achieved when the government itself guards the people’s democratic rights. “Thus, it is only through the collective action of the people, with the active participation of the health sector, can President Duterte be compelled to overturn the burial and prevent the return of Marcoses to the peak of power,” Carabeo concludes.