The Manila Times : FM: A truly great Filipino, perhaps the greatest Ilocano

2 April 2022

By The Manila Times

IN the past few months, the vilification of the late President Marcos, and eventually his family, again intensified as it was in the mid 1980s through two decades thereafter. Again, I am compelled to give my own piece about The Man.

The late President Ferdinand E. Marcos is one of the truly great Filipinos and perhaps the greatest Ilocano of the 20th century. In my few personal and private encounters with him, I perceived that FM was a sensitive person and kindhearted. He cared for his people not only collectively but as individual human beings. He could also empathize with them individually. He saw each and every man as a person. Totoong tao siya. Nilo Tayag knew this and can attest to that.

I am talking of FM not of BBM, so huwag kulayan politika. Personal ko ito.

In my autobiography entitled From Darkness to Light, I wrote about how we concocted a scenario in the aftermath of Plaza Miranda bombing incident, to put the blame on FM. The plot didn't succeed. Surely, FM learned and knew about this evil scheme of ours.

Yet, later on, he pardoned us, and set us free.

He had me called to Malacañang and worked in the Office of the President as special assistant to the presidential assistant — the first "prison to palace" story ever in the history of our country.

FM allowed himself to be used by the good Lord to restore my worth as a human being. He gave me back human dignity. And, furthermore, he helped us in our journey to a new life, to become productive citizens and contribute to the well-being of our society.

He even at one time greeted me when I accompanied the first astronaut-in-the-moon Neil Armstrong to the Palace: "How are you my young friend!"

We, the many other communist-indoctrinated "re-enlightened" lot can confidently say: This is the benign effect of what martial law can do to terrorism-inclined youth.

I wish there will be people to challenge my herein statements, so I can elaborate further.

Meanwhile, modesty aside, allow me to state: I am now in my third quarter of a century of existence (all praise and thanksgiving to YHWH our Elohim), and feel so blessed to have served my beloved country the Philippines under two of the equally (and I say this without fear of contradiction) "Great-est" Philippine presidents in the persons of Ferdinand Edralin Marcos and Rodrigo Roa Duterte!

What a great privilege indeed! The Almighty God our Creator be magnified.

Dr. Grepor "Butch" B. Belgica

Presidential adviser for moral

transformation and religious affairs