Isko undeterred by poll ranking; to continue reaching out to ordinary people
MANILA, Philippines — Despite placing third among presidential aspirants in a recent survey, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso remains upbeat about his election chances, saying he will just continue to focus his attention in going around the country and reaching out to as many people as he can in order to win in next year’s election.
“Well, thank you very much. At least bagamat kahit ako’y pipitsuging kandidato, at least andudun lang, dire-diretso lang [Although I’m just a small-time candidate, at least we are there and we will carry on],” said the Aksyon Demokratiko standard bearer in a media interview after the flag-raising ceremonies at Manila City Hall Monday.
“Tayo naman ang focus ko lang is umikot ng umikot [We are just focused on our plan to visit as many places as we can]. It’s a big country politically. While we are geographically small, but politically, it’s a very challenging country because you must cross waters from one place to another most of the time. And we will try to reach as many people as possible, and hopefully, may awa ang Diyos [with God’s mercy], we will win,” Moreno said.
The 47-year-old presidential aspirant made the statement when asked to comment about the latest Pulse Asia survey conducted December 1-6 where he and Senator Manny Pacquiao were both in third place with an 8 percent rating each.
Moreno pointed out that ever since he entered public service, he is used to being an underdog candidate since he has no resources to speak of, having been raised in the slums of Tondo where he was forced to scavenge for leftover food and later on collected trash and became a pedicab driver.
Be that as it may, he has always delivered on his campaign promises once elected as irrefutably shown by his many achievements in Manila, which he now promises to accomplish throughout the country if elected president.
“Lahat ng laban ko, it’s always like that (being the underdog). But ako naman, basta tayo, yung gusto nating gawin sa bansa, nakikita sa Maynila,” Moreno said.
“(That is) the principle of governance. From a ‘dugyot’ city, we became competitive in the world not because of mere statements but records will show. And you see now the development, tangible development. Naging malinis, maayos, nagka-gobyerno ang Maynila. Panatag ang tao, mababa ang krimen. As you can see, records will show,” explained Moreno.
Among Moreno’s achievements included: the modern Ospital ng Maynila, vertical housing like Tondominium and Binondominium, modern 10-storey public school buildings, social services for senior citizens, and assistance to public school students and teachers in the form of allowances, tablets and free bandwidth, among others.
Business is also growing in Manila under Moreno — from a P20-P30-billion average yearly investment, investors poured in P123 billion in the city during his first year as mayor, and another P147 billion in his second year.
“Tumama pa ang pandemya, pero hindi pa rin tayo nagpapigil. Tuloy-tuloy pa rin ang development at tingin ko itong development na ito – long term, short-term – mapapakinabangan ng tao,” he said.
So, ‘yung mga bagay na ito hindi maikakaila and its duplicable and scalable, the thing that we can offer for the country and to the people of our country, to our fellow men,” Moreno said.
Moreno has earlier said that it is his love for the ordinary people that made him decide to apply for President of the Republic, to offer to the public a serious and highly-qualified candidate willing to change the system of governance in the country that was ruled mostly by elitist politics for the past 60 years.
It is for this reason that Moreno, his running mate Dr. Willie Ong and Aksyon Demokratiko senatorial slate Dr. Carl Balita, Samira Gutoc and Jopet Sison have embarked on a “Listening Tour” across the country to consult with fisher folk, farmers, public market vendors, drivers, as well as students and ordinary residents to learn of the real state of the masses in the rural areas and present their “Buhay at Kabuhayan” platform of governance.
“Basta ako bababa sa gitna ng komunidad nila, sa gitna ng bukirin, sa gitna ng palaisdaan, sa población, sa siyudad, sa barangay and so on and so forth. Ang gusto ko makinig sa taong bayan, makipag-usap sa taong bayan. At sa pakikinig sa kanila, marami akong natututunan,” said Moreno.
“Sa awa ng Diyos, at sa tulong ninyo, pag pinalad tayo, magkakaroon kayo ng mainam, masinop at episyenteng pamahalaan. Tao muna. Dahil kayo lang ang pinaghuhugutan ko ng lakas ng loob – tao, tao, tao,” he said.
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