Gaite dares Pialago: Name prof who required rallying, don’t say they ‘passed away’
MANILA, Philippines — National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) spokesperson Celine Pialago was dared by a Bayan Muna lawmaker to name the professor who allegedly required them to attend rallies for additional class points.
Bayan Muna Rep. Ferdinand Gaite said on Thursday that Pialago should not make an excuse that the professor who forced her to join protest movements already ‘passed away’ — a jab at Pialago’s infamous “passed away” remark during the Miss Earth competition, when she was referring to a co-candidate who only passed out.
“Patunayan mo nga yan. Name that professor who promised you ‘dagdag points’ to join a rally. ‘Wag mong sabihin that she already ‘passed away’ ha,” Gaite said in a tweet.
(You should prove that. Name that professor who promised you ‘additional points’ to join a rally. Please don’t say that she already ‘passed away’.)
Patunayan mo nga yan. Name that professor who promised you "dagdag points" to join a rally. 'Wag mong sabihin that she already "passed away" ha. https://t.co/w9DuPaWTEY
— Bayan Muna Rep. Ferdinand Gaite (@FerdinandGaite) July 7, 2021
Pialago, who is also spokesperson for the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), clapped back at Gaite, saying that there was no negative connotation about joining rallies.
She also claimed that the additional points stemmed from the reaction papers that would be required from them — which would then be graded by their professors.
“Kayo lang ang nagiisip na ang context ng rally ay masama kaya siguro kayo nagagalit. Masyado ka atang guilty Cong. Gaite. Alam mo naman siguro, na kapag sumasama ang mga estudyante sa mga prayer vigil, rallies marami silang natututunan at higit sa lahat mamumulat ang kanilang kaisipan,” Pialago said in her Facebook post.
(It’s only you who thought that the context of rallies are bad, that’s why you were fuming. You appear so guilty, Congressman Gaite. I think you know that if student join rallies, prayer vigils, they learn a lot and their mindsets expand.)
“Dahil ang pagsama sa mga ganitong aktibidad ay may kaakibat na reaction paper, doon masusukat kung mayroon kang naintindihan. So, ano ang masama kung magkaka puntos ka? Nagiging masama lang ang pagrarally kung ang nagiging intensyon ng mga sumasama dito ay maging marahas at mag alsa sa gobyerno,” she added.
(Because joining such activities are accompanied with a reaction paper, it would be the measurement whether you understood anything. So, what’s wrong if you would gain points? It only appears bad if you do rallies where the intention of participants is to spread violence and overthrow the government.)
Pialago also left a parting shot at Gaite — whose party-list Bayan Muna is accused of being a communist legal front — using her own “passed away” line.
“Saka nga pala Gaite, ano masasabi mo sa mga kabataang nag ‘passed away’ dahil sa kagagawan ng mga kasama mo? Easy ka lang Cong. Masyado kang obvious,” she claimed.
(Also, Gaite, what can you say about the young people who really passed away because of what your colleagues did? Take it easy, congressman, you are too obvious.)
Pialago’s alma mater, Miriam College, already clarified earlier that the reason why some of their students join protests is because they were empowered to engage in political discussions — as they are not mere bystanders to what transpires within the society.
According to a statement released by Miriam College president and former Ambassador Laura Quiambao-del Rosario, students also get to appreciate the presence of dissenting views as it is the essence of a democracy.
“Miriam College students are not cookie-cutter academic products given the various opportunities offered to study the body politic. Empowered to participate in political affairs and various development programs and not to remain bystanders nor fence-sitters, they become engaged citizens committed to building a just and peaceful society,” the school’s statement read.
“And in being trained to respect opposite choices taken by others, MC students also learn to appreciate dissent as part of a healthy democracy while being reminded to act in loving charity, regardless of differences, by Christ’s symbol, the Chi Rho in the center of the logo,” it added.
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