[PHOTO AT LEFT - BONDING MOMENT President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III (right) embraces his nephew Joshua (left) before the Mass at the Manila Memorial Park in Paranaque, in observance of the 27th death anniversary of the President’s martyred father, the late Sen. Benigno 'Ninoy' Aquino Jr., on Saturday, August 21, 2010. Ninoy’s assassination at the tarmac of the then-Manila International Airport, now renamed Ninoy Aquino International Airport, triggered the People Power Revolution of 1986, which catapulted his widow, Cory Aquino, to the presidency. (EPA)]

MANILA, AUGUST 23, 2010 (BULLETIN) The late President Corazon Aquino has forgiven the perpetrators of the murder of her husband, Senator Benigno "Ninoy" S. Aquino Jr. on the same day of his assassination 27 years ago, August 21, 1983, the family's spiritual adviser revealed Saturday.

Speaking after the 4 p.m. mass for the 27th death anniversary of Ninoy at the tombs of his parents at the Manila Memorial Park, in Paranaque City, President Benigno "Noynoy" S. Aquino III said, initially he wanted to avenge his father's death but he realized that doing so will be a betrayal of his father's will to achieve justice through peaceful means.

Though Aquino said that he would still do what it takes to achieve justice for his father's killing, but a more priority for him is pursuing justice for victims of the rule of an abusive leader.

"May nagtatanong po sa akin kung naghahanap pa rin ho ako ng katarungan para sa aking ama, gagawin po natin ang magagawa natin," Aquino said but he noted that the 20-year prescription period of the case has already lapsed.

Aquino said what is more pressing for him as the leader of the country is attaining justice for all victims of society's ills such as students who were not able to finish their education, poor farmers, and victims of the Maguindanao massacre.

"Ang nagtutulak po satin ay katarungan hindi lang po para sa ating kapakanan, kung hindi ay katarungan para para sa buong sambayanan. Mayroon pa rin pong mga naghahamon na mangibabaw at pangingibabaw po na yan ay katumbas ng pang-aapi," Aquino said.

Fr. Catalino Arevalo SJ, who officiated the mass, said Cory was prepared to accept Ninoy's fate without hatred for those behind his killing.

He related a story about his counseling of Cory in Boston, Massachusets when Ninoy was still on his way to Manila. Cory, he said, invited him to their house so their family would be able to spiritually cope with whatever would happen to Ninoy.

Arevalo said Cory asked him about St. Paul's letter to the Romans which states that vengeance is in God's hands.

Arevalo said with this in her heart, Cory had no desire for revenge and on the day of her husband's assassination, he had already forgiven the perpetrators. This is contrary to those opposing proposals for her sainthood, he said, since she allegedly was not able to forgive her husband's killers.

Cory, he said, let God take his revenge and this Divine intervention was evident in her being instrumental in her win in the 1986 snap elections which ended the 20-year rule of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos.

Arevalo said the fulfillment of God's revenge continued in the overwhelming win of Noynoy in the May 2010 polls.

"Here lies a husband and wife who loved the country more than themselves. May their unique legacy to the people live every single day," Arevalo said.

The mass was attended by the Aquino sisters and their respective families. "Fourth Sister" Kris Aquino arrived when the mass was already about to end.

Vice President Jejomar Binay was also present though he came in late. Curiously, Binay's closest opponent in the last May polls, former Sen. Manuel Roxas II was only steps apart from the Vice President.

Some Cabinet members of the Aquino administration as well as his mother's former Cabinet officials were also present for the mass which was capped with the singing of "Bayan Ko" by some 200 yellow-clad Aquino supporters including founding members of the August Twenty One Movement (ATOM).

Meanwhile, Aquino in his official message posted in the Official Gazette website said thanked "everyone who came here to this solemn event to commemorate the death anniversary of my father."

"It is very heartwarming to know that even after 27 years, my father’s memory is still alive in our hearts and minds. This is a clear indication that his sacrifice was not put to waste. Being a leader of our nation is no walk in the park. I have braced my own shoulders for the same responsibility that both my parents bore with honor and fervor. I can only hope that, as it was with them, the people will remain my fountain of strength as I continue to lead our country along the straight and righteous path."

"We all know that there are still so many challenges that we have to overcome and it helps to remember why the cause he defended was so important.

The idea of setting aside one’s personal interest, comfort, convenience and even one’s freedom for the greater good was the lesson he taught me and all of us who strive for a more just and caring society."

"The memory of his sacrifice should push us to pursue real and lasting change in our country where complete, correct and timely justice is a reality for all."

"I am truly grateful to the Filipino people for joining our family in remembering our parents this month of August and for joining my administration in this process of continuing my parents’ cause."

"When my father was incarcerated, he sent me a letter. In his letter he said, “There is no greater nation on earth than our Motherland.

No greater people than our own. Serve them with all your heart, with all your might and with all your strength.” These are the words that helped me as a public servant and these words will continue to guide me as I lead this country."

"Perhaps working together for our country would be an ideal tribute to the man who loved his country until the end.

BongbongMarcos welcomes reinvestigation of Ninoy assassination

MANILA (PNA) – Senator Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos, Jr. welcomed on Wednesday the calls to reinvestigate the assassination of former Senator Benigno ‘Ninoy’ Aquino, Jr. at the former Manila International Airport upon returning home from exile in the United States on August 21, 1983.

”I think for the Marcos family, it is extremely important that we find out exactly what happened,” Marcos said in a media interview.

Marcos said the reinvestigation should produce good results that would put closure on the assassination of the opposition leader against his father, former President Ferdinand Marcos.

”It is important that we can find closure so that we can move on in our political history and not have to relive the past,” Marcos said.

Marcos insisted that his father was not the mastermind in the killing Aquino, whose death catapulted his widow Corazon Aquino to the presidency, replacing the 20-year-old Marcos regime in 1986.

”We have never wavered in our belief that there are other forces than those that have already been named and involved in the killing of Senator Aquino,” Marcos said.

The calls for reinvestigation of the Ninoy assassination cropped up anew as the nation commemorates his death anniversary on Saturday, August 21.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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