By Ellson Quismorio
Party-List solons belonging to the Makabayan Bloc are urging Anakbayan member 18-year-old Alicia Lucena to patch things up with her family amid the controversy caused by her “disappearance” upon joining the militant organization.
“As I understand ngayon, umalis siya sa bahay nila pero siyempre gusto natin, ang pinakamaganda dyan ay magkasundo silang mag-pamilya. At yun sana ang gusto nating mangyari,” Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate said during a press conference in the House of Representatives.
(She has left her house now but of course what we want is, what’s best is for them to patch things up as a family. That’s what we want to happen.)
“Hindi yung lalo natin silang pag-aawayin at pagbabanggain at paghihiwalayin, yung private na hindi nila pagkakaintidihan sana ay ibubuyangyang mo sa publiko (We don’t want them to continue fighting, to butt heads and tear them apart, or to make public their private disagreement),” he said.
Lucena, who has since dropped out from senior high school at Far Eastern University (FEU), also attended the presser. She reiterated that she wasn’t “kidnapped” by militants and instead joined the Anakbayan organization voluntarily.
Lucena, who ran away from home last July 10, also said that her relationship with her parents were already badly strained.
“Of course pinapayuhan namin siya na kailangan talagang i-win over yung pamilya mo, magpapaliwanag ka hanggang umabot sa punto na maintindihan ka nila, hindi man sila sumasang-ayon sa iyong paninindigan at pinaglalaban…You can agree to disagree kahit sa loob ng ating pamilya,” Zarate, himself a parent, further said.
(We’ve advised her that she really has to win over her family, to explain to them until they are able to comprehend, even if they don’t agree with your beliefs and ideals…You can agree to disagree even within your family.)
“Ang tanong ko mga sa kanya (Lucena), ‘Nakipag-usap ka na ba sa nanay mo, sa mommy mo?’ Point of view yan ng magulang eh bilang ina din (What I asked her was, ‘Have you spoken to your mommy already?’ This is the point of view of a parent, being a mom myself),” said ACT-Teachers Rep. France Castro.
Castro said she only met Lucena Tuesday night. “Hindi pwedeng forever na mag-aaway ang nanay at [anak]. Hindi pwedeng forever na tinitiis ng magulang ang anak. Eh ganun din naman ang anak,” she said.
(A mother and child can’t quarrel forever. A parent can’t resist the child forever. The same is true for the child.)
If she would have her way, Castro, like Zarate, said she wanted the Lucenas to live harmoniously and respect each other’s views.
“Gusto kong magkasundo ang nanay at anak para later on igalang ng bawat isa yung paninindigan. Hindi naman permanente yung away ng ina at anak. Kaya kami sa Makabayan tutulong kami na mapagkasundo itong si nanay at si Alicia…Eto bukas po ang Makabayan, Bukas din po ang Kongreso na tumulong sa kanila.”
(I want the the mother and child to patch things up so that later on they will respect each other’s opinions. The quarrel between them isn’t permanent. That’s why we in the Makabayan will help Alicia and her mom reach an understanding.)
The defiant Lucena, who was earlier reported missing by her mother, shared sad details about her current relationship with her parents during the presser.
“I preferred not to talk to them. Super hostile approach sa kin…Dinadala ako sa Camp Aguinaldo at Camp Bagong Diwa dahil sa pagiging aktibista ko po (They are super hostile to me…They bring me to Camp Aguinaldo and Camp Bagong Diwa because of my activism),” the young woman said.
She said she was made to talk to rebel surrenderees who are ex-New People’s Army (NPA) members. Ina-assume talaga nila na may ginagawa akong iligal (They’re assuming that I’m really doing something illegal).”
Lucena added of her folks: “Hindi nila alam yung consequences ng paglapit sa militar, sa PNP (They don’t know the consequences of their reaching out with the military and Philippine National Police).”
Asked about her motivations for joining Anakbayan, Lucena said, “Dahil po sa mga kasalukyang nangyayari ngayon sa lipunan (It’s because of what’s happening in our society).”
“Gusto ko pong gawin lahat ng kaya kong gawin para makatulong po talaga lalo na po doon sa school ko po…tuloy-tuloy po yung pagtaas ng tuition so gusto ko pong labanan yung pagtaas ng tuition sa schools,” she said.
(I want to do everything I can to help, especially in my school…tuition always increases and I want to fight the continuous tuition hike in schools.)