Australian journalist calling out Marcos’ scoffing in interview goes viral

March 8, 2024 - 1:39 PM
Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. speaks during an exclusive interview with Reuters, at his hotel in Washington, U.S., May 4, 2023. (Reuters/Evelyn Hockstein)

“May I ask you why that’s funny?” an Australian journalist asked President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. after he laughed off her question about the latter’s late father’s plundered money.

The unfazed calling out of ABC’s Sarah Ferguson in her show “7.30”, and the following reaction of Marcos went viral on social media.

A snippet of the interview was shared by X (formerly Twitter) users.

Some lauded the Ferguson for her demeanor during the interview.

“I like it when Marcos was called out for laughing at the host’s question and he totally lost it,” a priest wrote on X in resharing the clip, garnering over 40,000 likes.

The interview tackled the West Philippine Sea conflict where Marcos stressed that the Philippines want to peacefully resolve issues with China.

Among others, they also brushed on his visit in Australia and former President Rodrigo Duterte’s drug war.

Ferguson then brought up the overthrown former president Ferdinand Marcos Sr. and the repercussions of his authoritarian rule.

Marcos Jr. contested the term “authoritarian”, stating that what had happened under his father’s martial law was more of a “peace and order situation”.

Ferguson proceeded with another question

“Contemporary court judgements acknowledged the atrocities that were committed but also the plunder of the country’s resources. Why wouldn’t you want all of that money back in the hands of the Filipino?” 

Marcos Jr. stammered for a few seconds and then let out a chuckle. Before he could try to answer again, Ferguson interrupted and asked why he laughed.

He fumbled for words following this and then denied the assertions made against his family. The president referred to their ill-gotten wealth as “propaganda”.

Some Filipinos did not buy the president’s response.

“What they did was forever carved in stone and etched in everyone’s memory. His winning the last election does not in any way absolve him and his thieving family from the crimes they committed,” an X user said.

An Australian writer also posted about the interview, noting the president’s justification of his father’s atrocities.

“Dictator Ferdinand Marcos’ son, of the same name and now Philippines president, is trying to justify dad’s ‘authoritarianism’ and the deaths & atrocities he is well documented to have ordered and overseen. Can’t trust this bloke and neither should anyone else,he wrote.

The Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) uncovered evidence of Swiss bank transactions of the Marcos family when they left Malacañang in 1986.

The Supreme Court ordered the forfeiture of US $658 million worth of frozen Swiss bank deposits belonging to Marcos Sr. in 2003.  

Meanwhile, Marcos Jr. has returned to the Philippines after attending the Australian-ASEAN Special Summit in Melbourne this week, where he reportedly secured investments worth P86 billion.