NAAWAN, Misamis Oriental (MindaNews / 29 October) — “The sins of the father are not the sins of the son”, so says circumstantial presidential aspirant Senator Bato de la Rosa in gentlemanly parrying blows intended for co-presidential contender Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.
Agree, no question asked. But it’s another matter if the son benefits and enjoys wondrously the perks and frills of his father’s sins of plunder and pillage of the nation. The elder Marcos’ sins had infected the entire family; they are now in the family blood.
Not only the father but the mother as well was directly involved in the plunder of the country. In fact, in 2018, Imelda Marcos, former governor of Metro Manila and Minister of Human Settlement was found guilty by the Sandiganbayan of creating private foundations in Switzerland from 1978 to 1984 that allowed her family to funnel illegally amassed government funds during the martial law period. She was meted a minimum 44 years prison term.
We should not forget that the father, one of the world’s longest reigning dictators, stole between $5 billion and $10 billion from the country’s coffers, according to the World Bank and UN Office on Drugs and Crimes.
The corruption of the Marcos regime was outrageous enough to earn the distinction of being the “Greatest Robbery of a Government” from the Guinness World Records.
Despite their hurried exit from the country in February 1986, the dictator together with his wife Imelda and children Bongbong, Imee and Irene, managed to cart away “essential belongings” which included crates of cash, various gems worth $ millions (some of which were in diaper boxes), 70 pairs of jeweled cufflinks and enough clothes to fill 67 racks, and $124M in deposit slips, according to The Guardian and the Washington Post.
The cash amounted to P 27,744,535 in 22 boxes aboard the two US Air force C-130 planes that brought the Marcos group to Hawaii. The cargo was impounded by the Customs Service.
It is not entirely known the total loot of the Marcos family when it was in absolute power.
As of 2015, only P170-billion Marcos wealth was recovered by the government since the four-day peaceful revolt that forcibly sent the family in exile in Hawaii. The amount is a drop in the bucket even if reckoned only from the $10 billion estimate of the World Bank and the UN.
No wonder, therefore, that the Marcoses continue to live to this day like royalty awash in inexhaustible wealth. Their loot could make kings and princes.
No wonder they have earned favors, admiration and support from the Duterte regime.
No wonder the Marcos family can make devilish attempt to revise the history of their horrific plunder of the wealth and future of the country.
No wonder the namesake of the dictator can make a run to the presidency, a final dash to be in the apex of power again.
All thanks to the stolen wealth from the Filipino people.
The specter of the Marcos sins is now haunting the nation.
It is tragic and the height of Filipino idiocy if history is allowed to repeat.
(MindaViews is the opinion section of MindaNews. William R. Adan, Ph.D., is retired professor and former chancellor of Mindanao State University at Naawan, Misamis Oriental, Philippines.)