Opposition Senator Leila M. de Lima has vouched for the readiness and qualifications of the senatorial slate of opposition coalition “Otso Diretso” to carry the torch of hope against dark and gloom of the patronage politics of the present administration.
De Lima, a human rights and social justice champion, said she believes that the opposition’s senatorial candidates will not fail the Filipino people in standing up for them and fighting against poverty, injustice, and the mockery of democracy and sovereignty.
“Silang walo ay kumakatawan sa kakayahan at kahandaan ng oposisyon na tindigan at ipaglaban ang mga tunay na isyu ng bayan: kahirapan, inhustisya, paglapastangan sa demokrasya at soberanya, at kawalan ng katarungang panlipunan,” she said.
“Silang walo ay maniningas na sulo ng pag-asa sa dilim at lagim ng kasalukuyang pulitika at pamamahala,” she added in her recent Dispatch from Crame No. 467.
The opposition coalition’s eight-man senatorial slate dropped by De Lima’s ancestral home in Iriga City last Feb. 13 for a quick breakfast en route to Naga City where they held their proclamation rally for the upcoming May 13 national and local elections.
They were welcomed by more than 500 Irigueños, most of whom are De Lima’s relatives, neighbors, friends and supporters.
Otso Diretso’s slate includes Rep. Gary Alejano, Sen. Bam Aquino, human rights lawyer Chel Diokno, civic leader Sam Gutoc, former solicitor general Florin Hilbay, election lawyer Romy Macalintal, former senator Mar Roxas, and ex-Rep. Erin Tanada.
The lady Senator from Bicol appealed to the Filipino electorate, notably among her fellow Bicolanos, to throw their unequivocal support – and votes – behind the senatorial candidates of the Otso Diretso who will stand for the country and for the Filipino families.
“In choosing our new set of leaders, let us please be mindful of what the coming elections really mean for all of us. It should neither be a popularity contest, a showbiz bonanza, nor a public auction,” she said.
“Para ito sa kapakanan ng ating mga anak. Para sa katiwasayan ng ating pamayanan at lipunan. Para sa kaayusan ng ating pamahalaan,” she added.
De Lima also expressed optimism that the warm welcome the Otso Diretso received from Bicolanos would infect the rest of the Filipino voters in casting out what she called the “politics of hate” and the “culture of fear and impunity” in the country. “I hope the courage of the Oragon will infect the rest of the nation, especially in this electoral season. I pray for an outbreak of will and determination among us to drive away the politics of hate and the culture of fear and impunity that have engulfed our country for almost three years now,” she said.