DAVAO CITY, November 24, 2016 — President Rodrigo Duterte assured protesters contesting the burial of late strongman Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (LNMB) that he would not require permits for the conduct of rallies against the decision.
The protesters will neither need to secure rally permits nor fear being evicted. As your President, You have my word. You have my commitment,” he said.
Duterte said the police would be limited to traffic and basic safety purposes.
We shall keep a lean number of police personnel. Their role shall be limited to traffic enforcement and basic public safety standards. They are prohibited from carrying long firearms.”
The military, meanwhile, will be limited to barracks.
Let me assure you that while protest actions are being staged, our military forces will remain and confined in camp,” Duterte said.
Duterte said that protest actions will remain allowed in all public areas, including public properties and establishments.
He said permits, while regulatory, are troublesome for protesters, especially those who were marching from one local government unit jurisdiction to another.
But while he is open to criticism from parties opposed to the hero’s burial, Duterte challenged the protesters to answer “no” to two questions: was Marcos a President, and was he a soldier?
The law provides that former Presidents and soldiers may be buried at the LNMB.
Protesters, however, have insisted that while the burial may be legal according to the Supreme Court, it was wrong because it threw aside the abuses committed under Marcos’ two-decade rule.
But Duterte said all decisions he has made and still has to make “are always guided by the common good and general welfare of our people.”