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Tinago lang, di ninakaw: Duterte claims Marcos stashed billions to protect economy

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The family of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos claimed he amassed billions of pesos in public funds during his rule as a way of protecting the Philippine economy, President Rodrigo Duterte said.

In a speech at the oathtaking of new public officials in Malacanang Tuesday (August 29), Duterte said the Marcoses gave a noble reason for their patriarch’s theft.

“And the only reason really was sabi nila, that the father was protecting the economy. Now, of course, the eventual kung maalis siya. But he was thought of regaining the Malacañan and that is why ganito ang lumabas. Parang naitago,” he said.

Duterte said the Marcoses have expressed willingness to return some of the ill-gotten wealth they amassed.

“Sabi nila na they’ll open everything and probably return ‘yung nakita lang. Sabi nila na, ‘malaki ang deficit mo sa…’ ‘Maybe this year, ang projected deficit spending would be big,’ sabi niya. Baka makatulong. Pero hindi ito malaki,” he said.

In addition to money, Duterte said the Marcoses also plan to return “a few gold bars.”

The President said he is already looking for a guy who could handle the negotiation with the Marcoses for the return of ill-gotten wealth.

“I will accept the explanation, whether or not it is true, wala na eh. And they are ready to return,” he said.