Cayetano launches eco-friendly, lead-by-example campaign in Senate bid: Only in PH?

Published February 7, 2022, 6:37 PM

by Ben Rosario

Former Speaker and Taguig-Pateros Alan Peter Cayetano is launching his bid for a Senate comeback with an “eco-friendly, lead-by-example” campaign as the three-month campaign period opens on Feb. 8, Tuesday.

Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano on stage

Cayetano’s campaign camp will not use printed materials for his campaign and has asked the public to show their support for his Senate bid by planting trees and mangroves.

 This is the first time in the Philippines and perhaps the world, that a candidate will publicize his candidacy by using eco-friendly methods.

“Ano ang pumapasok sa isip natin ‘pag sinabing ‘halalan sa Pilipinas’? Nandyan ang maaksayang paggamit ng papel, tinta, at iba pang printing materials. Ilang puno ang nasasakripisyo natin sa iilang buwan lamang na kampanya?(What image comes to mind when we talk of elections in the Philippines? It’s the wasteful use of paper, ink, and other printing materials. How many trees are sacrificed for the few months of the campaign period?),” Cayetano explained on Monday, Feb. 7.

“Hindi lamang ito maaksaya, nakakadagdag pa ito sa napakalaking problema natin sa basura, (They are not only wasteful, they also add to the garbage problem that is huge enough as it is.),” the former House leader added.

Cayetano urged supporters and voters to demonstrate their support for his candidacy by pursuing urban farming projects in their backyards and by resorting to planting green walls.

He also encouraged supporters to grow flowering plants and engage in other sustainable practices, saying the future generations are depending on us to leave a better world for them.

The veteran lawmaker also said he would not mount motorcades in keeping with his push for a more environment-friendly approach to his campaign.

Cayetano said one of the unexpected results of the pandemic was it brought families closer together and made the environment cleaner as people stayed home.

“This campaign season should not be a reason for candidates to spoil this unforeseen benefit,” he said.

Leading by example in doing away with printed campaign materials, Cayetano said his campaign will instead focus on digital platforms since according to a Pulse Asia survey, 63% of Filipinos have access to the internet as of 2021.

“Malawak na rin ang naabot ng internet sa Pilipinas at posible na ngayong magpatakbo ng isang eco-friendly campaign.(The internet has a wide reach in the Philippines, and this makes it possible for us to run an eco-friendly campaign.)” Cayetano stressed.

Cayetano, who has topped two national surveys in recent months, urged his supporters to join the movement and not produce campaign materials other than digital ones.

“Samahan ninyo ako sa ating bagong style ng pangangampanya. Huwag na po tayong mag-print ng mga poster dahil nakasisira ito sa kapaligiran natin. Tumutok na lang tayo sa Facebook at iba pang platform para hikayatin ang mga Pilipinong ibalik tayo sa Senado. (Join me in this new campaign style. Let’s not print posters because these will only contribute to the destruction of the environment. Let’s focus on Facebook and other platforms to encourage Filipinos to vote us back to the Senate.),” he said.