Santiago takes swipe at rivals in Cebu rally
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Presidential candidate Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago on Friday took a swipe at some of her rivals on her third public appearance since her campaign launch.
“Ngayon sa kampanya yung iba naninira ng iba walang maipakita. Yung iba dyan walang karanasan pero ang lakas ng loob magprisinta na presidente. Napakahirap maging presidente,” she said in her speech before the students and faculty of University of Cebu-Banilad campus.
She did not directly identify who these personalities are but the ‘inexperienced’ one is an apparent reference to Sen. Grace Poe, who is also running for president and is only at half of her six-year term as senator.
Santiago was warmly welcomed by hundreds of the students and faculty present at the program. They cheered at her usual pickup lines and jabs at opponents.
The feisty senator is trailing in surveys and had made a few public appearances since the campaign period started on Feb. 9. The event here was her first out of town public appearance since the campaign kickoff in Ilocos Norte with running mate Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.
She also said in her speech that Filipinos must give importance to the experience of the candidates they vote for.
“Yung iba walang alam kung nagbabasa sa tinuro ng assistant nila edi assistant na lang nila dapat tumakbo…yung mga tumatakbong presidente ngayon sila ba ay naging honor student?” she said.
Santiago reiterated to the audience her speech at the Comelec debate in Cagayan de Oro last Sunday that a leader must have academic, professional and moral excellence.
“Maski sino na lang ba pwede maging presidente? Tapos may pera sila susuhulan nila para siraan nang siraan yung may abilidad na nagpuyat at naghirap?” she said.
Santiago also emphasized that leaders must have morality.
“Wag yong masyadong maraming kerida tama na yung isa. Yung iba sobra na kayo eh,” she said without naming names.
Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, whom Santiago considers a good friend, has admitted to being a womanizer.
At the end of her speech that lasted around 10 minutes, Santiago said the country’s future may be influenced by voting for the right candidates.
“Look into the future, the happiness lies there. Be happy with me and all the others who think like me,” she said.
After granting photo opportunities with students and faculty members, Santiago immediately left the venue to catch her flight back to Metro Manila.