De Lima to Bicolanos: Help Otso Diretso bets eradicate poverty, injustice
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Leila de Lima has urged her fellow Bicolanos to help the Otso Diretso slate in the upcoming May 2019 midterm elections, in order for the candidates to work against the problems affecting the country.
De Lima on Wednesday assured voters that the opposition candidates will stand and fight against issues brought by the current administration.
“Silang walo ay kumakatawan sa kakayahan at kahandaan ng oposisyon na tindigan at ipaglaban ang mga tunay na isyu ng bayan: kahirapan, inhustisya, paglapastangan sa demokrasya at soberanya, at kawalan ng katarungang panlipunan,” the senator said in a statement, hand-written from her detention cell in Camp Crame.
“That’s why I’m fervently appealing to my fellow Bicolanos and Bicolanas: Kaipuhan ta matabangan sinda (Let us help them so they can help us),” she added.
Some of the Otso Diretso candidates are currently in Naga City, Camarines Sur for their proclamation rally.
The opposition slate is composed of Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano, re-electionist Senator Bam Aquino, human-rights lawyer Chel Diokno, Marawi civic leader Samira Gutoc, former Solicitor General Florin Hilbay, election lawyer Romulo Macalintal, former Interior Secretary Mar Roxas, and former Deputy Speaker Erin Tañada,
But before the candidates went to Naga, they stopped over at Iriga City — De Lima’s hometown — to meet the senator’s relatives.
The Bicol region is a known bailiwick of the opposition. Former Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo, who worked with the previous administration, was a mayor of Naga City for six terms. Vice President Leni Robredo also hails from Naga, while Senator Antonio Trillanes IV traces his roots to Ligao City in Albay.
De Lima says she hopes that the Bicolanos’ resolve to stick with the opposition even if it is not popular will be emulated by people from other regions and provinces.
“Those who are afraid, accomplish nothing. To me, this expression in Bicol captures the essence of a true Oragon – someone who is unafraid to take control of his/her own destiny, undaunted by the odds, and steadfast on his/her principles and values,” she said.
“I hope the courage of the Oragon will infect the rest of the nation, especially in this electoral season. I pray for an outbreak of will and determination among us to drive away the politics of hate and the culture of fear and impunity that have engulfed our country for almost three years now,” she added.
The senator, detained due to drug-related charges when she was still the justice secretary, also asked people to vote not based on popularity but for the sake of the society.
“In choosing our new set of leaders, let us please be mindful of what the coming elections really mean for all of us. It should neither be a popularity contest, a showbiz bonanza, nor a public auction,” De Lima explained.
“Para ito sa kapakanan ng ating mga anak. Para sa katiwasayan ng ating pamayanan at lipunan. Para sa kaayusan ng ating pamahalaan,” she noted.
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