Presidentiables vow better Philippines as Eleksyon 2022 campaign period starts

Presidential candidates on Tuesday marked the start of the three-month campaign period ahead of Eleksyon 2022 with rallies mostly in their respective bailiwicks or hometowns, promising their respective versions of how the Philippines may improve if they were elected to its helm.

Labor leader and presidential candidate Leody De Guzman pushed ahead with his proclamation rally at the Bantayog ng mga Bayani in Quezon City despite lacking a permit for the gathering.

He appealed to the public to vote for candidates who were “just like us” or those who shared the sentiments of workers.

“Kumbinsihin natin ang ating mga kababayan, na ang pagbabago ay wala sa mga kumakandidatong trapo, dynastiya, mayayaman. Ang pagbabago ay nasa atin mismo, kung tatangkilikin mismo, yayakapin ang mga kandidatong kauri natin, na may track record para sa ating interes, ‘yun ang pag-asa natin,” De Guzman said.

(Let us convince our countrymen that change does not come from traditional politicians, dynasties, or the rich. Change is in ourselves if we support and embrace candidates who are just like us and have a track record of promoting our interests. That’s our hope.)

Supporters of De Guzman held a caravan from Cainta, Rizal before proceeding to the venue of the rally.

Presidential candidate Senator Panfilo Lacson and vice presidential bet Senate President Vicente Sotto III attended a Mass ahead of their proclamation rally at the Imus Grandstand in Cavite.

Lacson maintained during his speech that the government is the country’s biggest problem, and that good governance is the solution.

He urged the public to consider the future generation when choosing the next set of leaders.

“Isipin natin ang kinabukasan ng ating mga anak, isipin natin ang kinabukasan ng susunod na henerasyon. Huwag na natin isipin ang sarili natin,” he said.

(Let us think about the future of our children and the next generation. We should no longer think of ourselves.)

At the Philippine Arena in Bulacan, presidential bet Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and vice presidential candidate Sara Duterte launched their campaigns in front of thousands of supporters.

COVID-19 protocols were strictly observed during the event and only fully vaccinated individuals were allowed to enter the venue.

Marcos reiterated his objective of uniting the country amid challenges such as the COVID-19 crisis.

“Noong una akong nagpahayag ng aking balak na ako ay tatakbo bilang pangulo ng Republika ng Pilipinas, sinabi ko na ako’y tatakbo dahil ang aking layunin, ang aking pangarap para sa ating bansa ay ipagkaisa muli ang sambayanang Pilipino,” he said.

(When I first declared my intention to run for president of the Republic of the Philippines, I said I would run because my goal, my dream for our country, is to unite the Filipino nation again.)

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno and and his running mate, Dr. Willie Ong, held their proclamation rally at the Kartilya ng Katipunan in Manila.

In his speech, Moreno advised the public to choose something different if they wanted to experience change.

“Because if you keep doing the same thing over and over again, then don’t expect different results,” he said, recalling that the country had been ruled by either a Marcos or an Aquino for a total of 39 years.

Moreno and his partymates from Aksyon Demokratiko held a motorcade around Manila before the event.

Senator Manny Pacquiao launched his presidential campaign in his hometown General Santos City. Due to a leg injury, his running mate, Deputy Speaker Lito Atienza, sent a video message instead of attending the event in person.

“Sisiguraduhin ko na ang bawat Pilipino panalo sa laban ni Manny Pacquiao at sisiguraduhin ko sa inyo na walang mahirap na inaagrabyado at inaapi,” Pacquiao told supporters.

(I will make sure that every Filipino wins in Pacquiao’s fight, and I will make sure that no one is treated unfairly.)

“Sisiguraduhin ko sa inyo na walang pamilya na walang sariling tahanan dahil yan po ay ginagawa ko na mula noon hanggang ngayon… Nagsasalita dito sa inyong harapan, hindi isang trapo na politiko, nagsasalita ako sa inyong harapan bilang inyong lider at tagapagtanggol,” he added.

(I will make sure that every family will have a home because I’ve been doing this before and until now. I am not addressing you as a traditional politician, but as a leader and defender.)

Prior to the rally, Pacquiao joined his supporters in a motorcade in General Santos.

Vice President Leni Robredo expressed confidence and faith in the Filipino people while stating that a president must always be honest and guard public funds against corruption.

Robredo, who was joined by her running mate, Senator Francis Pangilinan, and members of their Senate slate known as “Tropang Angat,” argued for honest administration, claiming that public workers with integrity will offer faster government services and lead to a more progressive nation.

“Ang pinuno, dapat manguna sa pagiging huwaran; dapat siyang manguna sa pagtatakwil ng palakasan, sa pagsunod sa mga patakaran, at sa pagsigurong mananagot ang mga nanlilinlang sa taumbayan at nagsasamantala sa kapangyarihan,” the presidential candidate said in a speech in her hometown Naga City, Camarines Sur.

(A leader should be a role model, and take the lead in rejecting political patronage, following the rules, and making corrupt and abusive public officials accountable.)

The Commission on Elections, meanwhile, streamed on Facebook the e-rallies of presidential bets Norberto Gonzales and Faisal Mangondato.

The campaign will run until May 7, two days before the elections, which will take place in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. — with a report from Ma. Angelica Garcia/VBL/NB, GMA News

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