Human rights lawyer Jose Manuel “Chel” Diokno on Thursday, Oct. 7, filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) for senator in the May 2022 polls.
Diokno seeks to redeem his loss in the 2019 midterm elections, where he finished 21st.
He will run under the Katipunan ng Nagkakaisang Pilipino (KANP).
“Siguro marami sa inyo nakakakilala sa akin dahil sa ngipin… Tuwing pinag-uusapan natin ang mga issue ng bayan pinupuna nila ang ngipin ko. Actually okay lang naman sakin yun, maliit lang naman na bagay ang ngipin, pero hindi ba dapat pag-usapan nila ang malaking bungi at bulok sa sistema natin? (Maybe many of you know me because of my teeth… Every time we talk about pressing issues, they criticize my teeth. Actually, that’s okay with me, it’s just a small thing. But should they talk more about the dent and rot in our system?)” Diokno said.
“Kung ako’y bibigyan ng pagkakataon na magsilbi bilang isang senador, gagawin nating abot-kamay ang hustisya. Palalakasin natin ang mga alternatibo sa paglilitis ng kaso sa korte, palalakasin natin ang arbitration, mediation, at pati ang ating barangay justice system. Sisiguraduhin nating may pananagutan because it is my firm belief that it is the certainty of punishment that stops crime (If I’m given the opportunity to serve as a senator, we will make justice within reach. We will strengthen alternatives to court proceedings, we will strengthen arbitration, mediation, and even our barangay justice system. We will ensure that there is accountability, because it is my firm belief that it is the certainty of punishment that stops the crime),” he added.
Diokno is the chairman of Free Legal Assistance Group, an organization of human rights lawyers in the Philippines. He is also the founding dean of the De La Salle College of Law.