- Otso Diretso candidates faced criticism when they attempted to visit the Scarborough Shoal
- Some said that the opposition candidates just did it for a publicity stunt
- However, they finally commented on the criticisms against them
The candidates of Otso Diretso said that their supposed visit to the Scarborough Shoal was not for publicity. KAMI learned that for the opposition candidates, they just wanted President Rodrigo Duterte to be true to his promise in protecting the Philippines and fighting against China.
In a report by the GMA News (author Erwin Colcol), Samira Gutoc said that the issue is not about them doing it for publicity or not, but it should be about the administration, hearing the struggles of the local fishers.
Former Solicitor General Florin Hilbay said that they just called out President Duterte for not fulfilling his campaign promise.
"Yung ginawa namin, hindi siya publicity stunt. We're just calling out the President for a promise that he made. Ang original na publicity stunt ay yung jetski niya, and we're just holding him accountable for a promise that he made," he said.
Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano said that what they did was a symbol to challenge President Duterte to fight for the right of the Philippines.
"Ang aming ginawa ay isang simbolo ng paghahamon sa ating Presidente na once and for all, tayuan ang ating karapatan sa West Philippine Sea," Alejano said.
Even if he was not present during the protest, Eric Tañada urged other candidates to join their outcry if they also believe that the Scarborough Shoal is part of the country’s territory.
"Lahat ng mga kandidato kung sila ay naniniwala na importante ang kasarinlan natin, samahan nila kami at igigiit natin ang ating kasarinlan diyan sa West Philippine Sea," he said.
As previously reported by KAMI, former TV reporter and Senatorial aspirant Jiggy Manicad said that the country’s dispute with China is a sensitive issue and it should not be used for publicity. He also questioned the motive and timing of Otso Diretso candidates in their protest against China.
KAMI also reported earlier that Otso Diretso candidates Chel Diokno, Florin Hilbay, Samira Gutoc, and Gary Alejano prepared a jetski and urged President Duterte to fulfill his promise. They also planned to visit Scarborough, but the Philippine Coast Guard did not allow them and mentioned “national security” as the reason.
Enjoyed reading our story? Download KAMI's news app on Google Play now and stay up-to-date with major Filipino news!
Just ahead of Last Fool Show release, movie stars Arci Muñoz and JM de Guzman answer tricky questions from HumanMeter. These two stars were extremely honest with their answers! Check out all of our exciting videos – on KAMI HumanMeter YouTube channel!