“Leni rallies preparation for people power”

Presidential candidate and former Secretary of Defense Norberto Gonzales said Tuesday that Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo’s massive campaign rallies are setting up her supporters for another uprising of people power if she loses in the June 9 election. May 2022.

In an interview with the Manila Times, Gonzales claimed Robredo’s camp cannot accept defeat and is eyeing the possibility of people power with its large crowds in pre-vote rallies.

“I think they consciously pursue the elements of popular power. For example, they weigh very heavily on the Church. This is the first time that it has happened that priests [and] religious elements are aired as part of their support mechanism,” he said.

Gonzales added that the vice president’s camp may struggle to garner support from the armed forces, especially retired generals.

“I think the camp of Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr. [or BBM] already knows the potential of people power,” he said.

The former defense chief claimed that the Robredo camp was infiltrated by communists, particularly with the support of the Kilusang Mayo Uno task force, which recently approved the candidacy of the vice president and her running mate, the senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan, the KMU being a known communist front, according to Gonzales.

“Talagang grabe noong araw kami diyan, ‘yan ang kinatatakutan namin. Kasi ‘yan ang tsaka training ground CPP-NPA (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army) recruitment just before martial law, lumantad na ‘yan KMU, nagmamartsa na ‘yan (it was bad then, we feared them. Because this is the training and recruiting ground of the CPP-NPA just before martial law, they were already on display and parading)”, did he declare.

Gonzales added that mass support for Robredo was controlled by the Communists given their organization and connections.

He said the conviction of former Commissioner of the Electoral Commission (Comelec) Rowena Guanzon and former associate judge Antonio Carpio in the reliability of Smartmatic, and the silence of the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting or PPCRV could be indicators that they would cheat for Robredo in the election and that Marcos will be cheated.

On the other hand, according to a press conference by Gonzales’ rivals, Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso and Senator Panfilo “Ping” Lacson, the former defense chief admitted that they felt taken advantage of. by the vice president’s camp with her supporters asking them to stand down.

He said two of those who approached him were his friends from the Robredo camp and asked him to give up.

Gonzales added that Domagoso was “bitter” that Robredo ran when she first said she only wanted to unite the opposition.

He also claimed that Domagoso would have been willing to run for Robredo’s vice president or even senator had she expressed her intention to run sooner.

Meanwhile, the former senior official said Lacson offered Robredo the chance to decide whether Lacson or Robredo would pursue their offers based on the results of the investigation, which the vice president’s camp rejected, but when Robredo was leading against Lacson, she said she wanted to revisit the previous opportunity.

Gonzales also said that the three (he, Domagoso and Lacson), including Senator Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao, have agreed to put each other in a Cabinet position if one of them wins, and that they will fight destabilization efforts against the government. , if applicable.

As Election Day approached, he reminded people to be ready for the same, as a change in government and policy will have to take time.

“We have to start the process of change, to start accepting the fact that we should become the first world. To do that, we have to change our political system, maybe towards parliamentarism and autonomy. Another thing I am sad is this division between rich and poor, which is reflected in the education system. We should try to have a standard, whether you are rich or poor, and raise the level of education. The quality of our people is the more important when it comes to something as positive as becoming first world,” he noted.

Robredo’s camp has denied that if Robredo loses the election, a people power revolt will be staged or plotted.

“That’s completely untrue,” Robredo spokesman Ibarra “Barry” Gutierrez 3rd said in a text message to the Manila Times when asked about a possible mass rally of supporters if Robredo couldn’t win the presidency.

During President Ferdinand Marcos Sr.’s second term (1969-1972), Gonzales joined growing anti-government protests.

He co-founded the Kilusan ng mga Demokratikong Sosyalista ng Pilipinas, which later evolved into the Partido Demokratiko Sosyalista ng Pilipinas (PDSP).

The PDSP joined forces with the Moro National Liberation Front to overthrow Marcos.

KAITHREEN CRUZ AND MOSES CRUZ

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