Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos on Monday dismissed as a joke the recent statement of President Rodrigo Duterte that she helped finance his campaign for Malacañang last May.
"Wala namang katotohanan 'yan. Palabiro lang ang Presidente Duterte, pinapalundag niya tayong lahat, pati ako, napalundag eh," she told reporters outside the Supreme Court (SC), where she joined supporters of the planned burial for her father, the late President Ferdinand Marcos, at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
She said her participation in Duterte's campaign was to pitch for votes in the so-called "Solid North" provinces in the Ilocos region, where the Marcoses continue to wield power and command adulation.
The governor's brother, defeated vice presidential bet and former Senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. was the running mate of the late Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago, who placed fifth in her third bid for the presidency.
"Sinuportahan natin siya (Duterte) at walang kapalit," Marcos said.
Duterte disclosed before a gathering of Luzon local officials on October 4 that Marcos even borrowed money so she could contribute to his campaign kitty.
The President also recalled the tight bond between his family and that of the late dictator, saying his father, Vicente Duterte, stood by the former leader during the 1965 elections.
Vicente Duterte, a former governor of undivided Davao, was secretary of general services from 1965 until 1968.
"That is why I cannot disassociate [myself] from the Marcoses," the President said, who believes that the former leader should be interred at the Libingan ng mga Bayani because he was a soldier and commander-in-chief.
The SC may come out with the ruling on the consolidated petitions against the planned burial on Tuesday when the status quo ante order issued by the justices expires.