Presidential aspirant and Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso on Thursday, Nov. 11, vowed that he will be fearless in defending the country’s sovereignty in the West Philippine Sea.
During his visit in the town of Botolan in Zambales on Thursday as part of his “Listening Tour,” Domagoso reiterated his plan to pursue the Hague ruling to protect the rights of Filipino fisherfolks to fish in the West Philippine Sea.
“We will be fearless in fighting for what is ours. We will insist the Hague Ruling. But at the same time as being fearless, we are going to be fair with our discussion and management of the situation on both sides,” he said in an interview.
“We will be faithful to our farmers and fisherfolks. Ang mga mangingisda, dapat makapangisda sa loob ng ating teritoryo sa dagat. At iyon ang magaganap (Fishermen, should be able to fish in our territory. And that is what will happen): undeterred, peaceful, and productive fishing opportunities under our rules,” the Manila mayor added.
If elected as president, Domagoso also vowed that the national government’s security spending will focus on external defense.
“Bibili tayo ng tingga? Babarilin natin ang kapwa nating Pilipino? I’ll just invest it in the body of water (and) protecting the future of our country, na wag nang mabawasan yung natitira pa,” he stressed.
The Aksyon Demokratiko standard bearer also bared his plans to modernize the Philippine Navy and Philippine Coast Guard and improve the country’s lines of defense on its western coast.
“I will reinforce our Navy and Coast Guard. We will invest more on the western side of the country, so that we can protect our sovereignty and territorial jurisdiction as recognized by (the) UN and all other nations,” Domagoso said.
Strengthening the country’s Mutual Defense Treaty and Visiting Forces Agreement with the United States will also be part of his plans, he said.
“Treaties will be recognized. Trade with America, Vietnam, China and all other nations will continue because (the) WPS issue is far different from our economic issue in terms of trade,” he said.
“We’ll take that as an opportunity for us to gain, for the people to gain, for the country to gain.”