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No opportunity to talk with Robredo — Makabayan

/ 03:42 PM October 17, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Bayan Muna chairperson Neri Colmenares and the Makabayan coalition did not have the opportunity to talk with Vice President Leni Robredo, the group said Sunday.

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In a statement, Makabayan explained why Colmenares and the coalition have not endorsed Robredo’s presidential bid.

“Neri and Makabayan have not had the opportunity to talk with VP Leni. They have sought a dialogue many times not just to unite on the anti-Duterte and anti-Marcos stand, but more importantly a platform for change that would benefit the people,” Makabayan said.

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“While there are common points on current issues, there are also long-term issues to consider. This meeting is important for a political coalition like Makabayan that represents the marginalized sectors of society,” the group added.

Makabayan said that while the “immediate task” is to “defeat Duterte and Marcos,” they also needed to discuss reforms for the next six years, including land reform, national industrialization, labor contractualization, and the peace process.

Makabayan said it has not endorsed any presidential bet at this time because it is still in the process of consulting the candidates on platforms and programs, “while pushing for the broadest possible unity to defeat Duterte and Marcos.”

The coalition also said it is not true that it has endorsed Manila Mayor Isko Moreno or Senator Manny Pacquiao.

Makabayan said its members do not know the reason for Colmenares’ non-inclusion in the senatorial slate of Robredo but noted that it is not because he has not expressed support for the Vice President.

“We never got the chance to hear the objections to Neri’s inclusion nor were we given a chance to respond. We can only speculate that there are objections coming from some of her supporters representing big business interests, militarists or even politicians who are at odds with Makabayan over various issues,” the group explained.

Makabayan said it is open to talking with other opposition groups.

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“Makabayan has approached the 2022 elections with this goal — to forge the broadest unity to defeat Duterte and Marcos and advance a pro-people platform to address the crisis,” they added.

“Makabayan is a coalition of political parties with a defined platform and program of action and internal democratic processes. While it is not a member organization of 1Sambayan, Makabayan supports the latter’s efforts at unifying the democratic forces,” the coalition said.

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TAGS: 2022 elections, Bayan Muna, Leni Robredo, Makabayan, Neri Colmenares
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