- Jiggy Manicad questioned the motive and timing of Otso Diretso in protesting against China
- He noted that the dispute is a sensitive issue and it should not be used for political advantage
- Manicad added that the conflict with China is not a simple project that could be used for publicity
The former TV reporter and Senatorial aspirant, Jiggy Manicad, has spoken regarding the attempt of Otso Diretso to go to the disputed Scarborough Shoal.
KAMI learned that for Manicad, the motive and timing of the opposition candidates are “suspicious” now that it is campaign period, as reported by the Manila Bulletin (author Ben Rosario).
“We must avoid turning these sensitive issues towards our advantage as political candidates. Hindi ito simpleng sortie o project na pwede po nating gamitin for publicity. The dispute is an extremely sensitive issue that should not be taken lightly,” he said in a press statement.
Manicad stated that the issue over Scarborough should be discussed thoroughly. He also commended what media did recently when they interviewed local fishers about their experiences.
However, the former TV reporter questioned the motive and timing of Otso Diretso.
“But if you are a candidate, and if it is the election period, then the motive and timing is suspicious,” Manicad stated.
“We must not use this powder keg of a situation for election purposes,” he added.
Manicad noted that even the media have the guidelines and ethics that they should follow in terms of dealing with territorial disputes, like provoking actions from either side of the dispute.
As previously reported by KAMI, Otso Diretso candidates Chel Diokno, Samira Gutoc, Florin Hilbay, and Gary Alejano had prepared a jetski and urged President Rodrigo Duterte to fulfil his 2016 promise to defend the Philippines from China.
However, KAMI also reported that the Philippine Coast Guard did not issue permits to the opposition candidates to use boats going to the disputed Scarborough Shoal.
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