Nearly 600 priests, nuns, brothers back Robredo, Pangilinan candidacies
MANILA, Philippines — Almost 600 Filipino priests, nuns, religious brothers, and deacons expressed their support for presidential candidate Vice President Leni Robredo and vice-presidential contender Senator Francis Pangilinan, saying they “best fit the job” to be the country’s next leaders.
“…among the candidates who have laid out their political platforms and applied for the highest and the second-highest posts of the land, we adjudge that it is Vice President Maria Leonor ‘Leni’ G. Robredo and Sen. Francis ‘Kiko’ Pangilinan who best fit the job to be the next president and vice president of the Philippines,” the group “Pari Madre Misyonero Para Kay Leni” said in a statement.
“With this, we express our full support for their candidacy in the upcoming national elections,” they added.
(569 Signatories as of Feb 15, 6:00AM) STATEMENT OF SUPPORT FOR LENI ROBREDO & KIKO PANGILINANWe, Filipino priests,…
The statement of support, which was posted on Facebook over the weekend, has garnered 569 signatures as of Tuesday morning.
“After much prayer, discernment, scrutiny, discussion, and consultation with the grassroots of various sectors and local communities, we arrived at three essential qualities every leader of the country should possess and have witnessed to,” the group said.
Members of the group also believe Robredo and Pangilinan best fit these qualities, such as having “moral ascendancy and aptitude to lead the country,” respect for basic human rights, and patriotism for the Philippines.
In having “moral ascendancy and aptitude to lead the country,” the group said a leader “must be known for his/her moral integrity evinced in his/her life of civility, right conduct, virtue, and fear of the Lord.”
Further, a leader must have a “track record of public service that is unblemished of corruption” and should also “eschew” political dynasties and patronage politics.
A leader, they added, should have “demonstrated the intelligence, maturity, and capacity to lead and confront the large-scale and deep-seated problems of the land; and has the right program for the alleviation of poverty and the other pressing concerns the country faces in the contemporary and digital age.”
The other quality, which is a “respect of the basic human rights and a resolve for universal equality,” is possessed by a leader who values the lives of everyone regardless of their socio-economic status or political affiliation.
“Fight corruption in all its forms; make public servants accountable for their mismanagement of funds and services; stand against a dictatorial rule that infringes on freedom of expression, and contest any policy that marginalizes and abuses the poor especially on their right to live and to have the means to survive as manifested in recent extra-judicial killings and inappropriate response to the pandemic,” the group added.
A leader, they said, should also possess “patriotism for the Philippine nation” by ensuring the greater interest of its citizens.
“A leader must show a genuine commitment to assert the sovereignty of the Republic of the Philippines against foreign neo-colonists; adhere to the Philippine Constitution at all costs; observe both international and national laws in the pursuit of justice and fairness,” they added.
Further, a leader should “protect the environment from its wanton destruction; ensures the equal opportunity for everyone to access learning and wealth; shows compassion and concern for the welfare of every Filipino both in the country and abroad; and has the political will to realize his/her noble vision for the nation’s progress, unity, and peace.”
Robredo and Pangilinan have earlier secured the backing of several other sectors, including the urban poor, senior citizens, the LQBTQIA+ community, among others.
Recently, five National Artists declared their support for Robredo’s presidential bid.