Opposition senatorial bets cast vote on election day

Robie de Guzman   •   May 13, 2019   •   2321

Senatorial aspirant and Magdalo Party-list Representative Gary Alejano (left), Muslim candidate Samira Gutoc (upper photo center), re-electionist Senator Bam Aquino (lower photo center), former solicitor general, Pilo Hilbay (right)

MANILA, Philippines – Some of the candidates of opposition slate ‘Otso Diretso’ went to their respective hometowns to cast their votes for the 2019 National and local elections on Monday morning.

Senatorial aspirant and Magdalo Party-list Representative Gary Alejano voted in his hometown in Negros Occidental.

The former soldier cast his ballot at precinct 0012A in Barangay 3 in Sipalay town.

Alejano believes the midterm polls will be a test to the relevance of the Magdalo party.

“Puwede naming sabihin na relevant kami, pero sabihin ng tao na you’re done. Then we will just die a natural death. Iyun din ang usapan namin sa kulungan, tumakbo si Trillanes,” he said. 

“Pag tumakbo ka, ‘pag natalo ka, e di pahinga na. Ganoon din kami, tumatakbo kami, ito ang aming tayo, kung ayaw nila sa amin, so be it,” the lawmaker said. 

In the last Pulse Asia pre-election survey conducted from May 3 to 5, Alejano placed 21st to 32nd.

Meanwhile, Otso Diretso’s lone female and Muslim candidate Samira Gutoc went back to her hometown in Marawi City to cast her ballot.

She voted in Precinct No. 0019A at the Cauayan Elementary School in Lanao del Sur.

Gutoc ranked 21st to 32nd in the latest pre-election survey of Pulse Asia.

Former Solicitor General Pilo Hilbay, on the other hand, voted at Jose Corazon De Jesus Elementary School in Tondo, Manila on Monday morning.

While Mar Roxas cast his ballot in Conrado Barrios Memorial Elementary School in Baybay, Roxas City a few minutes past 6 a.m., making him among the early birds.

Roxas, who served as Interior and Local Government Secretary under the administration of Former President Benigno Aquino III, is seeking to return to the Senate.

Roxas placed 16th to 17th in the latest Pulse Asia survey.

READ: Escudero, Pimentel, Roxas among first voters on Election day

Meanwhile, re-electionist Senator Bam Aquino voted at the South Central Elementary School in Concepcion, Tarlac at past 7 a.m., Monday.

Aquino was accompanied by his wife, Mary Fatima Gomez Aquino, when they voted in precinct no. 0225A, no. 75 clustered precinct.

Aquino was the only opposition candidate who was able to make it to the list of possible winners, ranking 9th to 15th in the survey.

In an interview, Vice President Leni Robredo described the opposition senatorial bets’ bid to win the elections as an uphill battle, but she took solace in the passion of their volunteers and supporters.

“Napaka-uphill ng battle, pero in the last several weeks, nakita namin ‘yung passion ng mga volunteers, ano ‘yun, unrivaled,” she told reporters after casting her vote in Naga, Camarines Sur.

Opposition groups vow to campaign for presidential bet Leni Robredo

Robie de Guzman   •   October 7, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Critics of the administration on Thursday vowed to come together to campaign for Vice President Leni Robredo following her announcement to seek the presidency in the 2022 elections.

In a statement, opposition coalition 1Sambayan urged “every peace and democracy-loving Filipino to unite and stand behind” Robredo.

“We in 1SAMBAYAN stand firm behind VP Leni in her presidential bid in the 2022 national elections. It is a light of hope that comes at a time of great uncertainty: a country on its knees due to a failed pandemic response, a struggling economy, and a backdrop of the loss of lives and livelihood for the Filipino people,” it said.

“[W]e are up against the vast resources of the Duterte administration. If we remain divided, we will stand to lose more than just the elections: we will lose our country, our democracy and integrity in public service,” it added.

“But knowing that we are fighting for the survival of the country fuels our vigilance and our resolve to push for the presidency of VP Leni in next year’s elections,” it further stated.

1Sambayan earlier endorsed Robredo as its presidential candidate for next year’s polls.

Former Senator Antonio Trillanes IV also said that the Magdalo group will join Robredo in her fight to defeat the administration’s bet and in accomplishing her plans for the Philippines.

“Nagbubunyi ang Magdalo sa desisyon ni VP Leni na pamunuan ang tunay na oposisyon sa 2022 elections sa pagtakbo bilang Presidente,” he said.

“Makakasama nya ang Magdalo para maipanalo ang laban na ‘to, at tuluyang iahon ang ating bansa mula sa pagkasirang ginawa ni Duterte,” he added.

The Akbayan Party, which also endorsed Robredo’s candidacy expressed hope that she will be able to clinch the presidency to “stop the continuation of tyranny, win the fight against the pandemic and economic recession, and lead us back safely to the path of democracy.”

Robredo is expected to file her certificate of candidacy on Thursday afternoon.

She will be facing other presidential aspirants, including former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso, and Senator Panfilo “Ping” Lacson.

Kiko Pangilinan, Leila de Lima, Bam Aquino lead LP Senate bets for 2022 polls

Robie de Guzman   •   September 28, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Liberal Party (LP) on Tuesday announced the nominations of Senators Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan and Leila de Lima, as well as former Senator Bam Aquino, as its senatorial candidates for the 2022 elections.

In a statement, the LP said the formal nomination of Pangilinan, de Lima, and Aquino happened during the party’s virtual National Executive Council Meeting.

Aquino has yet to announce his plans for the upcoming polls.

The gathering was attended by LP party chairperson and Vice President Leni Robredo, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, Quezon City Representative Christopher “Kit” Belmonte, and former lawmakers Teddy Baguilat and Erin Tañada, among others.

The LP said it also passed a resolution endorsing Senator Risa Hontiveros and Atty. Chel Diokno as part of its initial list of guest senatorial candidates, for being aligned with the party’s principles.

The former ruling party also passed another resolution granting Robredo full authority and discretion in initiating talks and coming up with agreements, as well as identifying and assembling a united national slate of candidates for president, vice president and senators, “while respecting her preference on the elective position she may decide to run for, if any, with the full support by the Party as a whole.”

Robredo has yet to announce her plans for the 2022 elections.

The period for the filing of candidacy will be from October 1 to 8.

‘Destroyer of reputation’: Trillanes’ return to jail, possible – Malacañang

Marje Pelayo   •   May 27, 2019

FILE PHOTO: Sen. Antonio Trillanes in a press conference at Ilustrado in Intramuros on July 1, 2014. | PVI/Willie Sy

MANILA, Philippines – Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo in a statement wished outgoing Senator Antonio Trillanes IV the best of luck as he may need it once he exits the Senate.

“While many will wish Mr. Trillanes good riddance as he is about to leave the hallowed halls of the Senate at the end of June of this year, we will instead wish him luck as he faces another prospect of being placed behind bars again as the self-confessed black propagandist turns against his master, even as his victims look forward to seeing the Senate, or better yet the Government, without the cantankerously obnoxious coup plotter,” Panelo said.

This was Panelo’s response to Trillanes following the senator’s latest rant on Twitter.

“Ayan ka na naman. Hindi ka pa nga nakakabawi sa kapalpakan mo dun sa inimbento mong offshore bank accounts na bintang mo sakin pati na rin dun sa mga sinabi mo laban sa Nanay ko, tapos may bago ka na namang bintang. This time si Bikoy naman ang source mo. Henyo ka talaga, Duts,” Trillanes said on his post referring President Rodrigo Duterte as “Duts”.

Just recently, President Duterte tagged Trillanes as “shameless” for ruining the Senate and for using his power as senator to run after people.

“You are shameless. You are not even a man,” Duterte said during a thanksgiving party for Senator-elect Bong Go.

Panelo said, Trillanes should answer the accusations of Peter Joemel Advincula (alias Bikoy) against him.

“The outgoing Senator should first address the serious allegation pointing to him as the mastermind and in conspiracy with certain political leaders identified with the opposition of the unlawful plot to topple the Duterte Administration,” the Presidential Spokesperson said.

Panelo said throughout Trillanes’ service in the Senate, he just proved himself as a “destroyer of reputations of people”.

With that reputation, Panelo believes Trillanes’ exit from the Senate will be his “great service to the nation.”

Trillanes’ term as senator ends in June this year.

The outgoing senator, meanwhile, posted a taunting reply to the Presidential Spokesperson.

“Panelo’s long press release betrays his and Duterte’s obsession about me. While, I’m supposed to feel good knowing that I have successfully gotten under their skin, but coming from somebody like Panelo, it somehow feels creepy,” he said in a tweet. — Marje Pelayo (with details from Rosalie Coz)

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