Posts tagged “Indemnification Bill

SELDA warns ML victims: Beware of scams

Rights group SELDA (Samahan ng Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto) warned martial law victims of possible scams in the process of their application for compensation for human rights victims.

“We call on all martial law victims to be wary of persons who ask for money for processing their claims,” said SELDA chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez.

Enriquez said their organization issues this warning after receiving reports that some victims were approached by people who asked for personal information and for processing fee for their claims.

Victims of human rights violations under  martial law are entitled to a compensation after the bicameral session of the Senate and Lower Houses signed the final version of the  martial law victims indemnification bill, now called the Human Rights Violation Victims Reparation and Recognition Act of 2013.

Pres. Noynoy Aquino is said to sign the bill into law on February 25, the anniversary of EDSA People Power.

According to Enriquez, a friend from the media forwarded her an e-mail from a concerned citizen who raised concern on the possibility of a scam.  According to the e-mail, individuals in Marawi City,  some of them teachers, were “recruited” to attend a seminar in Davao City as  martial law victims. They were allegedly asked to give P3,000 each, and were told that they will receive a million pesos if they attend the seminar. SELDA is currently verifying the said report.

“We are advising everybody not to fall prey to these culprits. We have fought for justice this long. We should ensure that the compensation, however small, shall be received by the rightful recipients,” Enriquez said.

SELDA also received a report from its local chapter in Concepcion, Tarlac that two SELDA members, both teachers in an elementary school who are tasked to encode documents of claimants in their town, were approached by a certain Gerry Caloza. He told them that he is from the Office of the President, and asked all sorts of question about their documentation work. Caloza cannot give any clear reason why he was interested with the information on the victims.

Martial law victims in Bataan, meanwhile, were approached by persons identifying themselves as members of a certain Bullion group, who told them they will receive millions in claims. The victims immediately informed Selda of the report.

Enriquez said it will be most safe and secure for the victims to contact SELDA, one of the organizations recognized under the Human
Rights Violation Victims Reparation and Recognition Act of 2013 to identify victims and help process the claims.

SELDA was the lead organization in the historic filing of the class suit against the Marcoses in 1986, and has regional chapters
nationwide which may help identify victims who may receive claims.

Enriquez also said their apprehensions are not baseless since there was a case on fake claimants discovered last year.

In November 2011, Edward and Marlyn Santiago, along with six others, were charged with estafa after the Criminal Investigation and
Detection Group (CIDG) found out attempts by some individuals to encash checks named after legitimate victims using fake IDs. The
Santiago couple is suspected to be recruiting persons to claim checks under the name of legitimate claimants.

For more information on the compensation for Martial Law victims, please contact SELDA at (632) 434-2837 or 0917-596-5859 . ###

Reference: Marie Hilao-Enriquez, SELDA chairperson 0917-5616800

Bill to compensate Marcos victims nears Congress OK

Leila B. Salaverria | Philippine Daily Inquirer
January 28, 2013

A quarter century after the ouster of dictator Ferdinand Marcos, the government will officially hold accountable his martial law regime for human rights abuses and its victims compensated for their sufferings.

A bicameral conference committee will hold a final meeting Monday to smooth out the final version of a bill that seeks to compensate victims of abuses during the 14 years martial law was enforced before it is submitted for approval by the House of Representatives and the Senate, Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman said Sunday.

Compensation will come from the P10 billion of the Marcoses’ ill-gotten wealth that Swiss authorities have transferred to the Philippines. The amount that each would receive would depend on what kind of abuse they suffered.

Aside from that, the impending law would hold Marcos responsible for what transpired during his dictatorship.

“Finally, over two decades after the fall of the dictatorship, we will have a law that puts the responsibility for human rights abuses square on the shoulder of Marcos and provides justice for all those who suffered under his reign,” Akbayan Rep. Walden Bello said in a statement.

Bello, a member of the bicameral panel, also said the bill would ensure that the younger generation would learn about the atrocities committed during martial law.

It is important to impart the lessons from the Marcos regime to prevent a repeat of the dark period, he said.

“The nation is practically on the verge of forgetting the atrocities committed during the martial law period, and this is not by accident but because of the deliberate revisionist efforts of the Marcos camp to whitewash the memory of that period. Justice also lies in ensuring that Filipinos of all generations will not forget the dark, violent past, and the bill ensures that,” he said.

Contentious issues

Samahan ng mga Ex-Detainee Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (Selda), for its part, said the bill was all the more significant for formally recognizing that abuses were committed during martial law and that there were those who did not take these sitting down.

“More than the monetary compensation, the bill represents the only formal, written document that martial law violated the human rights of Filipinos and that there were courageous people who fought the dictatorship,” the group said in a statement.


SELDA salutes Martial Law heroes

News Release
January 24, 2013

Bicam finalizes reparation and recognition bill for rights victims
SELDA salutes Martial Law heroes

“We salute the Martial Law heroes who, despite old age, sickness, maneuvers of the Marcoses, and all other obstacles along the way, have painstakingly stood and fought to make sure that this bill granting reparation and recognition to the martial law victims is passed. We have gone a long way. We have long fought for this,” said Marie Hilao-Enriquez, SELDA chairperson and a Martial Law victim herself.

Yesterday, the bicameral conference committee hammered out the final version of the Human Rights Victims Reparation and Recognition Act of 2013, formerly known as the Marcos victims compensation bill, provisions of which became acceptable to the majority of the victims as the final version now included SELDA’s position.

“In welcoming the final version, we remember the SELDA leaders who pursued the path of making the Marcoses accountable for the human rights violations they committed to the hundreds of thousands of Filipinos who fought martial law,” said Enriqiuez.

SELDA remembers and salutes the bravery and memories of Don Chino Roces, founding chairperson of SELDA, Dean Armando Malay, Dr. Nemesio Prudente, former Navy Capt. Danilo Vizmanos, Atty. Jose Mari Velez and Atty. Rolando Olalia. They were members of the Board of SELDA who decided to go after Marcos after the dictator’s downfall.

The group also commended the steadfastness of SELDA Board members who are still living, like Fidel Agcaoili, Juliet De Lima-Sison, Vicente Ladlad , Dean Francisco Nemenzo, Tita Lubi, Josephine Dongail and Doris Baffrey, Board members who are still alive.

“We share this victory to Atty. Romeo Capulong who took over as SELDA’s legal counsel when Atty. Jose Mari Velez died in 1991. He tirelessly assisted the victims and SELDA in the twists and turns of the case. He exerted all efforts against the maneuverings of the Marcoses and the machinations of the American and other Filipino lawyers in the case. We also dedicate this bill to all the heroes and martyrs of Martial Law who have gone before us, and who waged the most determined fight against the dictatorship and suffered the worst violations during martial law,” Enriquez stressed.

Enriquez added that this bill is a small effort of SELDA to ensure that their sacrifice shall not be put to waste. SELDA’s position on the “conclusive presumption” provision was among the positive provisions included in the final version of the bill. This provision states that the 9,539 victims who filed and won the historic class suit of Martial Law victims against the Marcoses filed in 1986 in Hawaii are automatically recognized as victims of human rights violations.

“The bill’s passage is a victory not only for the victims but for the Filipino people. More than the monetary compensation, the bill represents the only formal, written document that martial law violated the human rights of Filipinos and that there were courageous people who fought the dictatorship.

SELDA said that with the bill now ready for ratification by Congress, the victims should make sure that the law, when put into in effect, should be fully implemented. ###

Reference: Marie Hilao-Enriquez, SELDA chairperson 0917-5616800


SELDA to bicam: “Finish work” on next meeting

News Release
January 17, 2013

“Conclusive presumption”  asserted by victims

SELDA to bicam: “Finish work” on next meeting

Appealing to members of the bicameral conference committee to “finish their work” on January 23, Martial Law victims urged both members of the Lower House and Senate to stand by the “conclusive presumption” provision in the final version of the Marcos victims compensation bill.

“By then, we hope that the bicameral meeting will finish all the work, and ensure that the bill is passed and legitimate victims are recognized as such. Any more moves to counter what has been approved by the House by the duplicitous play of Akbayan Rep. Walden Bello should be stopped and condemned,” SELDA chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez said.

SELDA, the human rights organization who filed and won the historic class suit of Martial Law victims against the Marcoses in 1986, asserted that the 9,539 victims should be recognized as legitimate victims under “conclusive presumption,” contrary to the “disputable presumption” pushed by Bello.

“The Hawaii class suit has been recognized as a landmark judgment, but why do Akbayan Rep. Walden Bello and even CHR Chairperson Etta Rosales the first to cast doubts on the victims. These are essentially one and the same with the argument of the Marcoses, who disputed in Hawaii the legitimacy of the victims of human rights violations,” Enriquez asked.

She added that the victims took the risks of filing charges against the Marcoses for justice and indemnification, and have went through the rigorous and painful process of retelling the accounts of their arrest, detention and torture and of their colleagues. “And now these people want them to prove again, after 40 years, that they are victims? This is not only undermining history, this is a grave insult to them,” Enriquez said.  ###

Reference: Marie Hilao-Enriquez, SELDA chairperson, 0917-5616800

Martial law victims seek compensation

MANILA, Philippines – Martial law victims led by the Samahan ng Ex-detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (SELDA) challenged Malacañang to enact the Marcos Victims Compensation Bill into law in commemoration of the 40th year of the imposition of Martial Law.

Martial law victim Rody del Rosario said he was a victim of warrantless arrest during the Marcos regime and stayed in jail for 2 years.

He said that after 40 years, it is high time that the government recognizes the hardships suffered by victims of martial law.

ABS-CBN Umagang Kay Ganda, Sept. 21, 2012


“Enough is Enough, indemnify ML victims now!” – Selda

Press Release
September 3, 2012
 

From martial law to Noynoy Aquino: injustice continues

“Enough is Enough, indemnify ML victims now!” – Selda

Former martial law activists brought their demands for justice and indemnification at the Mendiola Bridge today as the country marks the 40th year of the imposition of martial law this month.

Members of the Samahan ng mga Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (SELDA) lambasted the Noynoy Aquino government’s negligence that resulted to unmonitored withdrawals from Imelda Marcos’ account at the Philippine Veterans Bank. The P36.55 million Marcos ill-gotten money under Imelda Marcos’ name is now only a little over P1M despite the garnishment order by the Sandiganbayan. Earlier in August, the ML victims suffered another setback after the Singapore Court ruled to award the $23Million Marcos ill-gotten wealth to the Lucio Tan-led Philippine National Bank. Tan is a known Marcos crony.

“We take on Mendiola once again just like 40 years ago so that the son of Ninoy and Cory Aquino hear and know that we are still here and that 40 is not just a number to remember but also a reminder of the length of time we have been fighting impunity and for the attainment of justice, “ Marie Hilao-Enriquez, SELDA Chairperson said.

According to the group, impunity still reigns after decades of struggling for justice. “After overthrowing Marcos, we filed and won the now historic Hawaii class suit for victims of martial law” Enriquez said, “But even under the present “matuwid na daan” of Noynoy Aquino, we continue to suffer from injustice.”

“All we get from the Aquino government are reports of failure after failure,” Enriquez stated, “When are we going see this administration seriously work for the justice that we, survivors of that dark regime, truly deserve?”

Furthermore, the human rights group deplored the state of the indemnification bill at the Senate “Inaamag na ata ito sa Senado,” (It probably has grown mold at the Senate) said Trinidad Herrera, SELDA board member and also a survivor of the dictatorship. The group proceeded to the Senate from Mendiola for a noise barrage. “Our senators should remember that they owe us a law that should have been implemented by now. What are they waiting for, another 40 years?”

The Senate Committee on Human Rights reported that they are still completing the signatories to the bill before bringing it to the plenary. The bill was first filed in 1997 and has never been signed into law up to the present even as Noynoy Aquino rants about being a victim of martial law.

“We are not pawns that the government can use for their electoral campaign,” Trinidad continued, “The bill must be passed for the indemnification of victims and not as a publicity tool to enhance the image of those eyeing re-election.”

Selda also stated that while September marks the 40 years of the imposition of martial law, they have nothing to celebrate.  “We are not here to commemorate the imposition of martial law, we are still here because the governments that succeeded the dictatorship failed to bring justice, end human rights violations and impunity. We continue to fight until we achieve justice. From martial law to Noynoy Aquino, our brand of activism lives on.” Enriquez concluded. ###

Reference: Marie Hilao-Enriquez, Chairperson (09175616800)

Trinidad Herrera, Board Member (09155443181)

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Indemnify martial law victims now – group

Remate Online

FORMER martial law activists launched a protest actions at the Mendiola Bridge today to demand for justice and indemnification as the country marks the 40th year of the imposition of martial law this month.

Members of the Samahan ng mga Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (SELDA) lambasted the Aquino government’s negligence that resulted to unmonitored withdrawals from Imelda Marcos’ account at the Philippine Veterans Bank.

The P36.55 million Marcos ill-gotten money under Imelda Marcos’ name is now only a little over P1M despite the garnishment order by the Sandiganbayan. Earlier in August, the ML victims suffered another setback after the Singapore Court ruled to award the $23Million Marcos ill-gotten wealth to the Lucio Tan-led Philippine National Bank. Tan is a known Marcos crony.

“We take on Mendiola once again just like 40 years ago so that the son of Ninoy and Cory Aquino hear and know that we are still here and that 40 is not just a number to remember but also a reminder of the length of time we have been fighting impunity and for the attainment of justice, “ Marie Hilao-Enriquez, SELDA Chairperson said.

According to the group, impunity still reigns after decades of struggling for justice. “After overthrowing Marcos, we filed and won the now historic Hawaii class suit for victims of martial law” Enriquez said, “But even under the present “matuwid na daan” of Noynoy Aquino, we continue to suffer from injustice.”

“All we get from the Aquino government are reports of failure after failure,” Enriquez stated, “When are we going see this administration seriously work for the justice that we, survivors of that dark regime, truly deserve?”

Furthermore, the human rights group deplored the state of the indemnification bill at the Senate .

“Inaamag na ata ito sa Senado,” (It probably has grown mold at the Senate) said Trinidad Herrera, SELDA board member and also a survivor of the dictatorship.

The group will proceed to the Senate from Mendiola for a noise barrage. “Our senators should remember that they owe us a law that should have been implemented by now. What are they waiting for, another 40 years?”

The Senate Committee on Human Rights reported that they are still completing the signatories to the bill before bringing it to the plenary. The bill was first filed in 1997 and has never been signed into law up to the present even as Noynoy Aquino rants about being a victim of martial law.

“We are not pawns that the government can use for their electoral campaign,” Trinidad continued, “The bill must be passed for the indemnification of victims and not as a publicity tool to enhance the image of those eyeing re-election.”

The group also stated that while September marks the 40 years of the imposition of martial law, they have nothing to celebrate.  “We are not here to commemorate the imposition of martial law, we are still here because the governments that succeeded the dictatorship failed to bring justice, end human rights violations and impunity. We continue to fight until we achieve justice. From martial law to Noynoy Aquino, our brand of activism lives on,” Enriquez said.


Martial law victims

Lino Santos | Manila Standard Today

Martial law victims and kin demand justice and indemnification during a rally at the Chino Roces (formery Mendiola) Bridge as the country marks the 40th year of the imposition of martial rule this month.


Martial Law remembered

PHOTO BY JUNNY ROY FOR ABS-CBNNEWS.COM

Photo by Junny Roy | ABS-CBN.com

Former martial law activists rally in front of the Senate on Monday to demand justice and indemnification as the country marks the 40th year of the imposition of martial law this month. The group lambasted the government for its failure to successfully prosecute the Marcoses for alleged atrocities under martial law.


Families of Martial Law victims urge Senate to pass bill compensating them for atrocities

Karl John Reyes | InterAksyon.com

Families of victims of Martial Law atrocities led by a human rights group urged the Senate on Monday to pass a compensation bill now pending in one of its committees.

“We have lobbied to our legislators even protested at the steps of the House of Representatives and the Senate demanding that the bill to indemnify victims of Martial Law be finally enacted into law. The Lower House passed its version of the indemnification bill, House Bill 5990, on March 21. Unfortunately, the Senate’s version, Senate Bill 2615, is still at the committee…level,” Roneo Clamor, national coordinator of Samahan ng ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at para sa Amnestiya.

Families of victims of martial law hold a rally in front of the Senate, asking the chamber to approve a bill that will compensate them for atrocities of the Marcos regime. (Jamin Verde/InterAksyon.com)

However, Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero debunked Clavor’s claim that Senate Bill 2615 is still pending at the committee. He said that the committee report is scheduled for plenary debate. The committee is still waiting for inputs about the report from Senator Joker Arroyo.

“Senator Arroyo wanted to make revision and reviews on the report before sending the bill for plenary debates,” said Escudero, whose late father Salvador, served as Agriculture Minister of President Ferdinand Marcos.

Marcos placed the entire country under Martial Law on September 21, 1972. Among those who implemented military rule was Marcos’ defense minister and now Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile.

“We are finished in the Committee but still waiting for the inputs of Senator Joker Arroyo. Ipinasa ko iyon sa last congress, we approved in on third reading but the House did not,” Escudero, chairman of the Senate committee on justice and human rights said.

 

Appeal from a victim’s son

Meanwhile, Ronnie Manalo, 49, of Capas, Tarlac appealed to the Senate to immediately pass the bill to indemnify his family, including other families and survivors of the human right violations during the Marcos dictatorship.

“Walo po kaming kaanak ng biktima ng Martial law na nandito. Ngayon, 49 years old na ako, wala pang katarungan hanggang ngayon, wala pa simula nang mapatay ang aking ama noong June 24, 1970 sa San Rafael, Tarlac,” Manalo said.

When he was six years old, his father, Romulo was allegedly killed by armed men after attending a farmer’s meeting in a sitio in San Rafael, Tarlac on June 24,1970.

“Napatay po ang aking ama na si Romulo Manalo sa isang masaker sa San Rafael, Tarlac noong June 24, 1970. Sabi nila papunta sila sa meeting, noong pag-uwi, hinarang sila ng mga may baril na military,” Manalo said. (My father, Romulo Manalo, was killed in a massacre in San Rafael, Tarlac on June 24, 1970. He left to attend a meeting but on the way home, he was blocked by armed military men.)

“Humihingi po kami ng hustiya at katarungan sa panukalang batas na ito. Pinatay po ang aking ama noong anim na taong gulang pa lamang ako, kaya ngayon nandito ako upang humingi ng hustisya at katarungan,” Manalo concluded. (My father was killed when I was just six years old which is why I’m here seeking justice.)

Legislation is needed to allot part of sequestered funds from the Marcoses’ wealth for the victims of Martial Law because the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law provides that all sequestered assets from the Marcos family should be spent for land reform.

In 1995, the Federal Court of Hawaii found Marcos guilty of grave human-rights violations in a class suit filed by Selda and awarded $2 billion in compensatory damages to the victims.

There were 9,539 complainants in the class suit against the Marcoses.

Three years later, the Swiss government transferred $640 million to the Philippine government. The Philippine Supreme Court ordered its transfer to the national treasury in 2003.

 

Marcos hands-off on the bill

For his part, Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., said he will not either participate nor vote on the Compensation Bill since it involves his family in the suit.

“Again, lahat ng compensation on human rights and their legal action for the compensation is now on the hands of the national government. As I said before, all cases on human rights victims including compensation, we don’t appear in court. We are not the party anymore, binitiwan na namin. Whatever the court’s decision, it is now with the human rights victims and the national government,” Marcos explained.

“I have to refuse to participate in the deliberation of the bill because it involves my family. So hindi naman tama na boboto ako, one way of another,” he said.


Martial law victims march to Palace, Senate

Dennis Carcamo | Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines – Members of a rights group on Monday marched to the historic Don Chino Roces Bridge near Malacañang to demand from the Aquino administration the indemnification of the victims of rights violations during the imposition of Martial law 40 years ago by the late President Ferdinand Marcos.

Members of the Samahan ng mga Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (SELDA) also scored President Benigno Aquino III’s government for alleged negligence, resulting to unmonitored withdrawals from the account of Imelda Marcos’ account at the Philippine Veterans Bank.

The P36.55 million Marcos ill-gotten wealth under the name of Mrs. Marcos, has shrunk to a little over P1 million despite the garnishment order by the Sandiganbayan, SELDA said.

Earlier in August, martial law victims suffered another setback after the Singapore Court ruled to award the $23 million Marcos ill-gotten wealth to the Lucio Tan-led Philippine National Bank. Tan is a known Marcos crony.

“We take on Mendiola once again just like 40 years ago so that the son of Ninoy and Cory Aquino [would] hear and know that we are still here and that 40 is not just a number to remember, but also a reminder of the length of time we have been fighting impunity and for the attainment of justice,” Selda chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez said.

“All we get from the Aquino government are reports of failure after failure,” Enriquez added.

Selda also scored the state of the indemnification bill at the Senate.

“Inaamag na ata ito sa Senado,” Selda board member Trinidad Herrera said.

From the Don Chino Roces Bridge, the group marched to the Senate in Pasay City and held a noise barrage.

“Our senators should remember that they owe us a law that should have been implemented by now. What are they waiting for, another 40 years?” Herrera said.

The Senate Committee on Human Rights reported that it’s still completing the signatories to the bill before bringing it to the plenary.

The bill has been pending in Congress since 1997.


Withdrawals From Marcos Wealth Deplored

Chito Chavez | Manila Bulletin

MANILA, Philippines — As the country marks the 40th anniversary of martial law this month, activists held a protest rally at Mendiola Bridge on Monday to denounce the Aquino administration for the unmonitored withdrawals from former first lady and now Congresswoman Imelda Marcos’ account at Philippine Veterans Bank.

Members of the Samahan ng mga Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (Selda) said the Php 36.55 million Marcos ill-gotten wealth under the former first lady’s name is down a little over R1 million despite the garnishment order of the Sandiganbayan.

Earlier in August, the martial law victims suffered another setback after the Singapore Court awarded the $23 million of the Marcoses’ ill-gotten wealth to the Lucio Tan-led Philippine National Bank (PNB).

Selda claimed that Tan is a known Marcos crony.

“We take on Mendiola once again just like 40 years ago so that the son of Ninoy and Cory Aquino hears and knows that we are still here and that 40 is not just a number to remember but also a reminder of the length of time we have been fighting impunity and for the attainment of justice,’’ Marie Hilao-Enriquez, Selda chairperson, said.

The group maintained that impunity still reigns after decades of struggling for justice.

“After overthrowing Marcos, we filed and won the now historic Hawaii class suit for victims of martial law. But even under the present “matuwid na daan (right path)” of Noynoy (President Benigno S.) Aquino, we continue to suffer from injustice,” Enriquez said.

“All we get from the Aquino government are reports of failure after failure. When are we going see this administration seriously work for the justice that we, survivors of that dark regime, truly deserve?” she said.

Trinidad Herrera, Selda board member deplored the state of the indemnification bill at the Senate. “It probably has grown mold at the Senate,” Herrera said of the measure.

The Senate Committee on Human Rights reported that it is still completing the signatories to the bill before bringing it to the plenary.

The group claimed the bill was first filed in 1997 and has never been signed into law up to the present even as Aquino rants about being a victim of martial law.

“We are not pawns that the government can use for their electoral campaign. The bill must be passed for the indemnification of victims and not as a publicity tool to enhance the image of those eyeing re-election,” Trinidad added.


200 biktima ng Martial Law, nag-noise barrage sa Senado

Henry Ateulan, Radyo Patrol 44 | DZMM Radyo Patrol 630

Nagsagawa ng noise barrage sa harap ng Senado ang may 200 biktima ng Martial Law bilang pagbatikos sa anila’y ill-gotten wealth ng pamilya ni dating Pangulong Ferdinand Marcos.

Pinangunahan ng Samahan ng mga Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (SELDA) ang aktibidad.

Isinisigaw ng grupo, ang anila’y kawalan ng aksyon ng administrasyon ni Pangulong Noynoy Aquino para i-monitor ang walang habas na withdrawal mula sa account ni dating first lady Imelda Marcos sa Philippine Veterans Bank.

Binabanggit pa nila na mula sa P36.5 milyon na ill-gotten wealth umano ng mga Marcos, umaabot na lang ito sa P1 milyon na naka-deposito.

Umaapela rin ang grupo sa mga senador, partikular na sa Senate Committee on Human Rights na isabatas na ang Indemnification Bill o panukalang magbibigay ng karapatan at kabayaran sa pinsalang idinulot ng batas militar.

Ang aktibidad ay isinabay sa ika-40 taon ng pagkakatatag ng Martial Law na idineklara ni dating Pangulong Marcos noong Setyembre 21, 1972.


Marcos’ victims demand payout

Joe Torres | UCANews

Marcos’ victims demand payout
Sufferers of tyranny still wait for compensation

Victims of human rights abuses during Ferdinand Marcos’ 20-year dictatorship in the 1970s and 1980s have called for justice and compensation as the country marks the 40th anniversary of the imposition of martial law this month.

At least 100 victims marched to the presidential palace and the Senate building in Manila today to demand what they described as “overdue justice.”

“We are still here,” said Marie Hilao-Enriquez of SELDA, an organization of former political detainees. ”Forty is not just a number to remember but also a reminder of the length of time we have been fighting.”

After decades of struggling for justice, “impunity still reigns,” Enriquez said.

What the victims of martial law get from the government are only reports of “failure after failure,” she added.

Martial law was declared on September 21, 1972 and lasted until 1981, when Pope John Paul II first visited the Philippines. It was declared to suppress what Marcos claimed to be increasing civil strife and a threat from communism.

Marcos’ subsequent rule became unpopular due to widespread human rights abuses by the military, such as the use of torture on political activists.

After his ouster in 1986, activists filed a class suit against him in a US court where he was found guilty of human rights violations. The Marcos estate was ordered to compensate around 10,000 victims.

Trinidad Herrera, a former political detainee, said a congressional bill designed to do this seems to have “grown mold” in the Senate.

“Our senators should remember that they owe us a law that should have been implemented by now. What are they waiting for, another 40 years?” he said.

The bill was first submitted in 1997 but has yet to pass through Congress.

Once approved and signed into law, the government is supposed to compensate victims using funds seized from Marcos.

“The bill must be passed for the indemnification of victims and not as a publicity tool to enhance the image of those eyeing re-election,” Herrera said.