Leila de Lima says admin line up no match to ‘Otso Diretso’ senatorial bets

Published March 21, 2019, 2:42 PM

by AJ Siytangco

By Hannah Torregoza

As far as she is concerned, opposition Senator Leila de Lima said the administration-backed senatorial candidates are no match for the “Otso Diretso” bets who boasts of a better performance and track record.

De Lima said that in contrast to President Rodrigo Duterte’s favored candidates, they cannot outshine former Senator Manuel “Mar” Roxas II and the seven other candidates completing the united opposition’s Senate slate in the upcoming May 2019 elections.

Senator Leila de Lima (REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco / MANILA BULLETIN)
Senator Leila de Lima

“Duterte’s rants against Secretary Mar only show that the President is still insecure of his former rival. He already won in the 2016 elections yet still chose to unleash his vicious tongue against the erstwhile presidentiable-turned-senatorial candidate this coming May polls,” de Lima said in her recent statement from the Philippine National Police (PNP) custodial center.

“Why the need to lash out? It’s because the President and his chosen candidates could not match Mar’s integrity,” she stressed.

De Lima noted that on his end, Duterte is endorsing two plunderers, a liar, an enforcer of the murderous war on drugs, and a loser in the 2016 elections, among others.

Duterte earlier hurled insults against Roxas, reelectionist Senator Paolo “Bam” Aquino IV, human rights lawyer Chel Diokno, former Solicitor General Florin Hilbay, election lawyer Romulo Macalintal, Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano and former Deputy Speaker Erin Tañada.

Only Samira Gutoc, former Marawi City civic rights leader, was spared by Duterte from his tirades saying he doesn’t want to speak ill of her because she is a woman.

In a recent campaign rally in Cauayan City, Isabela, Duterte accused Roxas of being disloyal for serving in the Cabinets of different presidents, and even threatened to hurt him.

“You are nothing to me. I can even shoot you for free,” Duterte was quoted as saying.

Roxas, who served as a Cabinet official during President Benigno Aquino III’s term, however, responded that his “loyalty is to the people and to the Filipino nation.”

“Mr. President, it seems that you lack confidence over the same surveys that gave you high trust ratings and catapulted your favorite candidate from obscurity to the magic 12 of the Senate race,” De Lima noted.

“This is why you still need to whip out that forked tongue of yours just to pull down the rivals of your allies,” she said.

De Lima said that instead of attacking the candidates from the opposition slate, Duterte ought to focus on solving the pressing issues in the country, which continue to burden the Filipino public, including the current water crisis. #MatalinongBoto2019