Opposition Senator Leila de Lima on Friday said she is gunning for a fresh term in the Senate primarily to continue her fight against injustice, and human rights and to press for good governance and national sovereignty.
De Lima, who is currently detained at the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) Custodial Center and still facing drug charges filed against her by the Duterte government, had filed her certificate of candidacy (COC) through her lawyer Dino de Leon.
The senator filed her candidacy under the leadership of Vice President Leni Robredo, who has officially filed her COC to run for president in the upcoming May 2022 national elections.
A staunch critic of the Duterte administration, De Lima said she is also running for reelection in order to hold the President and his allies accountable for their misdeeds, the extra-judicial killings their committed.
She also vowed to hold the Duterte government responsible for the many human rights abuses, corruption, and treachery to the nation.
De Lima said she also is running to ensure the protection of democracy and democratic institutions Duterte has destroyed in his six -year term as president.
She also stressed the need to run to protect the country’s national sovereignty, especially amid China’s persistent incursions in the West Philippine Sea.
“Together with VP Leni and under her leadership, I and the other candidates of the Liberal Party and our allies, continue to represent the opposition in this country. We present the people an alternative to the criminal government that now governs us in the most perverted sense, an alternative that should have been a continuity administration of peace, stability, and progress in 2016,” De Lima said in her official statement.
“Today, we find ourselves struggling to find our footing as the Duterte Administration has managed to reverse our economic gains when it completely botched up the pandemic response and sent hundreds of businesses to bankruptcy and threw millions of our countrymen to unemployment,” she added.
“(We are running) to stand the country back on its feet is the first order of business of any new government in 2022. The second is to make sure that the Duterte government is made accountable for the complete mess it made out of our economy and our people’s security, for the mass murders, treason and many other sins against the people,” she also said.
Since being imprisoned in 2016, De Lima said she will join the cause of the people’s call against injustice and oppression, even as she also fights for her own battle for freedom.
“My battle since 2016 when I was persecuted and then imprisoned goes hand in hand with the people’s struggle for justice and progress,” the senator said.
“I cannot but realize that this is what my whole being is now all about, this struggle to free myself and the Filipino people from this curse that has all but destroyed our nation,” she reiterated.