Today in Philippine History, December 7, 1972, Dimahilig attempted to assasinate Mrs. Marcos

Saturday May 04, 2013 ()

On December 7, 1972, Carlito Dimahilig attempted to assassinate the First Lady, Mrs. Imelda Romualdez Marcos when she was attending an awards ceremony in Manila which was part of her National Beautification and Cleanliness contest.

At the open-air ceremony, which was broadcast live on TV, one of the recipients Carlito Dimahilig, left the lineup of prize recipients and attacked Mrs. Marcos with a bolo knife.

Carlito Dimahilig
(Carlito Dimahilig lies dead after being shoot by Marcos' security guards)

Although the victim claimed that she had never received any martial arts training, her response to the attack mirrored a standard martial arts defence move: she folder her arms accross her chest, covering her vital organs.

Damahilig slashed repeatedly at Marcos' arms, finally causing Marcos to fall backwards across a table, from which position she attempted to ward further blows. Congressman Jose Aspitas and Linda Amor Robles, secretary of the beautification campaign, then grappled with the assassin, only suffer lacerations themselves.

(Video footage of the incident)

After what must have seemed an eternity, armed security guards, who had been standing well away from Mrs. Marcos, began firing. Dimahilig died on the spot with two bullets in his back.

Marcos was flown out by helicopter to a nearby hospital. The slash wounds on her arms required over 70 stitches. She also suffered tendon damage which required further surgery.

The first lady recovered quickly from her attack but wore her arm in a sling for many months.


  1. Rise and Fall of Imelda Marcos by Carmen Navarro Pedrosa, Manila, 1987 via The Book of Assassins by George Fetherling, Vintage Canada, 2001
  2. Photo credit: Himagsik Kayumanggi
  3. Video: Filipino Fighting For Freedom of Information 4FoI,


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