Imelda Marcos’s $21 Million Jewelry Collection Will Go to Auction
Designer shoes weren't her only obsession.
It seems the spoils of political corruption didn’t only satisfy her taste for designer shoes. In a confirmed auction, former Philippine first lady Imelda Marcos will see her multi-million dollar collection of jewelry surrendered to the highest bidders.
Over the course of her late husband Ferdinand Marcos’s 20-year presidential regime, the family amassed an enormous wealth of art, jewelry, and other valuable assets while the country experienced significant economic decline. According to the BBC, artworks reportedly confiscated from the family’s possession include paintings by Pablo Picasso, Fransico de Goya, and Michelangelo, among others.
In an official statement by the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG), an agency formed in 1986 to recover stolen assets during Marcos’s dictatorship, Philippine authorities will auction off approximately $21 million worth of jewelry.
According to PCGG Commissioner Andrew De Castro, their immediacy isn’t spurred by the country’s upcoming presidential election in June, where Ferdinand Marcos’s son, Bongbong Marcos, is a candidate for vice president. “Plans for this were made even before Senator Marcos declared his intention to run,” he said. “It has nothing to do with that.”
Originally confiscated in 1986, Marcos’s collection of jewelry was recently appraised by experts from Sotheby’s last year. According to CNN Philippines, some of the pieces, which range from bejeweled necklaces to a 25-carat pink diamond estimated at $5 million, will reportedly fetch even tidier sums.
According to CNN, all 300 pieces will be displayed in a public exhibition before they hit the auction block. PCGG’s chairman Richard T. Amurao said that “the exhibition of these ill-gotten jewels will be a great vehicle to raise awareness—especially for the younger generation and those who have forgotten—and to remind the Filipino people of the perils of the two-decade regime of corruption that was under the Marcoses.”
The Philippine government is currently determining dates for the public exhibition and sale.
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