Philippine Government to Auction Confiscated Jewelry Collection

April 3, 2016

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. auction / ˈɔk ʃən / (v.) – to sell something to the public and give the item to the one who offers the highest amount for payment
Example: Precious gems and jewelry are usually auctioned to the wealthy.

2. ill-gotten / ˈɪlˈgɒt n / (adj.) – obtained through an illegal or dishonest way
ExampleIll-gotten properties of corrupt politicians must be confiscated.

3. regime / reɪˈʒiːm / (n.) – a ruling government
Example: The Philippines was under military control during the Marcos regime.

4. extravagant / ɪkˈstrævɪgənt / (adj.) – unnecessary or excessive, especially when referring to spending
Example: Some billionaires go to extravagant getaways.

5. proceeds / ˈproʊˌsiːdz  / (n.) – total profit from something
ExampleProceeds from the concert will benefit the homeless.


Read the text below.
A huge collection of jewelry previously owned by former Philippine First Lady Imelda Marcos will be auctioned by the Philippine government in the international market.

The “Hawaii collection” is one of the three collections that make up the entirety of ill-gotten Marcos jewelries, which are altogether estimated to fetch a total value of $21 million. The collection consists of 300 pieces of luxury items. Its most valuable piece is a rare pink diamond the size of a grape, worth approximately $5 million.

The collection was seized by the US Customs when the Marcos family escaped to Hawaii after the collapse of the 20-year Marcos regime in 1986.

Ferdinand Marcos, Imelda Marcos’ late husband, is the 10th president of the Philippines. Before the end of his term, he declared Martial Law in 1972, putting the Philippines under military control. His extended reign is surrounded by controversies and allegations of corruption and human rights violations. In addition to that, his wife is widely known for her extravagant lifestyle.

After the historic People Power Revolution ended the Marcos regime, many of their allegedly ill-gotten properties and assets were recovered by the Philippine Commission on Good Governance (PCGG), a commission created specifically for countering corruption and recovering ill-gotten assets.

Since 2010, PHP1 billion worth of recovered Marcos assets have been auctioned, and proceeds have been remitted to the Bureau of Treasury. The same is to be done for the jewelry collections.

Before the auction, the PCGG plans to showcase some of the jewels in an exhibit, hoping to remind the Filipino people of their history.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         How can the auction proceeds be put to good use? Give some examples.
·         Aside from exhibiting some of the ill-gotten assets in an exhibit, how else do you think the government can raise awareness about Filipino history?

Discussion B

·         What must the citizens of a country do if they prove that a government official is corrupt?
·         What can be done to ensure that public officials who win offices will not be involved in corruption?

April 3, 2016