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Lagman says Marcos LNMB burial not backed up by law

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Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman on Tuesday (November 22) claimed that the interment of late dictator Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (LNMB) in Fort Bonifacio had no legal basis.

According to Lagman, the AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) directive that apparently entitled Marcos burial at the LNMB due to his service as a president and soldier “is not even legally effective”.

That particular directive, which Lagman said the Supreme Court (SC) used as its “principal basis” in allowing the former leader a hero’s burial, was identified as AFP Regulations G 161-375 dated September 11, 2002. It was issued by the Department of National Defense (DND).

“The Office of the National Administrative Registrar (ONAR) of the University of the Philippines Law Complex certified on November 21, 2016 that the said AFP Regulations G 161-375 is not registered or filed with the ONAR,” said Lagman, who is part of the Minority bloc in Congress that has been critical with President Rodrigo Duterte.

“Prevailing jurisprudence underscores the absence of efficacy of administrative rules not registered with the ONAR,” the Bicolano solon noted.

“Since said AFP Regulation governing burials at the Libingan ng mga Bayani is not filed with the ONAR, no rights, privileges and obligations have accrued from said issuance or regulations.

“Consequently, there is no law or issuance which qualifies Marcos to be interred in the Libingan ng mga Bayani,” explained Lagman, a human rights lawyer.

Last November 8, the SC en banc issued a majority decision dismissing the petitions which sought to halt the Duterte-ordered LNMB burial for Marcos.