BY CHRYSEE G. SAMILLANO
A united opposition group, called Bunyog-Pagkakaisa, is launching a signature campaign in Bacolod City and Negros Occidental to urge Vice President Leni Robredo to run for president in 2022.
Bunyog-Bacolod president Thezz Polanco said yesterday that they have started to distribute statements of support Sunday to assess how many votes Robredo will be able to garner should she run.
Bunyog is a Bicol term meaning unity. The group, that originated in Naga, was formed nationwide after Robredo won as vice president, she said.
Polanco said they believe that Robredo is qualified and competent to run for president because of her performance and because she is not a traditional politician. However, she will listen to the opinion of the people as she did when she ran for vice president, she added.
There is another group that will be launched today in Bacolod in support of her candidacy for president, she said, adding that candle-lighting activities were also held in Naga and Quezon City yesterday for a similar purpose.
Meanwhile, Polanco said the junking of the electoral protest filed by former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos against Robredo has proven that she has been vindicated of his accusations of alleged election fraud.
They are also commemorating today the fourth year of what they called the unjust detention of Senator Leila de Lima, and are considering her as a possible candidate for vice president, she added.
Their senatorial slate includes senators Kiko Pangilinan, Joel Villanueva, Juan Miguel Zubiri, and Risa Hontiveros, former senators Bam Aquino and Sonny Trillanes, human rights lawyer Chel Diokno, retired senior associate justice Antonio Carpio, former congressman Neri Colmenares, labor leader Leody de Guzman, Samira Gutoc, and Lipa Rep. Vilma Santos-Recto, Polanco added.
Bunyog vice president Miles Octavio said “the performance of Robredo is more than enough to free us from all kinds of hostilities happening around even in the government itself.” Octavio said Robredo is the answer to their cry for democracy. They are against dictatorship because the people want to be free just like other nations. So it is their right to defend the country from any form of oppression, she added.*