Former Senator Antonio Trillanes IV–the staunchest critic of President Duterte–is motivating Filipinos to register and vote by showing them in a 50-second video clip what the present administration has done in “silencing” the media and its critics.
He reminded the voting public that the last day of voters’ registration for the May 2022 polls is nearing. The Commission on Elections (Comelec) had earlier denied requests from lawmakers to extend the registration deadline beyond September 30.
In the video, the former senator displayed the many headlines over the course of the President’s five-year tenure that allegedly showed its penchant to silence a critical press.
“Kung sila kayang patahimikin, ikaw pa kaya? Ang sama-sama nating tinig, sa boto natin iparinig (If they can be silenced, so can you. Let our voices be heard through our votes),” Trillanes said.
The video highlighted news items on the Duterte administration’s alleged crackdown on its critics—ABS-CBN, Rappler’s Maria Ressa, Senator Leila de Lima, and former Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.
“Magparehistro para sa Halalan 2022. Ika-30 ng Septyembre 2021 ang huling araw ng pagpaparehistro (Register for the Elections 2022. The last day of registration is on September 30, 2021),” he said.
The video ended with the senator’s photo and the logo of the Magdalo party, which is also gunning for a seat in the House of Representatives via party-listrepresentation.
Trillanes earlier said he plans to run as president in the event Vice President Leni Robredo doesn’t vie for the position. However, he also stated that what he wants to see the most is the defeat of the present administration. He agrees that only a united opposition can do that.
Although Trillanes has yet to officially announce his political plans, many believe that he will seek a Senate comeback.
Trillanes failed in his vice presidential bid in 2016 but eventually became a firm supporter of Robredo, who won the race.
The former Navy officer first joined the Senate in 2007. He won a second term in 2013 and became Duterte’s most vocal critic upon the latter’s assumption of office in 2016.