The Golden Mosque in Quiapo turned green and red Saturday morning as members of the Muslim community welcomed vice-presidential aspirant Sara Duterte and her entourage.
Wearing a hijab, Sara spoke before a crowd gathered outside the mosque, campaigning for herself, her running mate Ferdinand Marcos and the UniTeam senatorial slate.
One of those in the crowd was Monirah Ali, 43 a former resident of Marawi City, who thanked Sara for the “Kalilintad 911” project in Davao City.
Ali said the Kalilintad 911 project helped her fellow Muslim brothers and sisters who fled to Davao City during the Marawi Siege in 2017.
“We owe Mayor Sara a lot because most members of my family were able to avail of housing in Davao following the Marawi Siege of 2017,” Ali said.
Ali said Sara treated the affected Muslim internal refugees equally that they felt welcomed and at ease in the city.
“All programs like psychological counseling, employment, livelihood programs and permanent housing they were able to avail even if they were not from Davao,” Ali said.
“That is why we Muslims are 100 percent behind BBM-Sara. We know we will not be left behind by the UniTeam” she added.
The Davao City Mayor visited Caloocan, Malabon and Navotas last Friday and led the blessing and inauguration of the UniTeam Headquarters in Camarin, Caloocan.
The UniTeam vice-presidential candidate was accompanied by Mayor Oca Malapitan and Rep. Along Malapitan at the said event.
According to Mayor Oca, the UniTeam Caloocan Volunteers Headquarters is a symbol of the support and love of the people of Caloocan for the BBM-Sara tandem.
Also present at the inauguration were House Speaker Lord Allan Velasco, Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian, senatorial aspirant Robin Padilla and members of Team Aksyon at Malasakit.
The vice-presidential aspirant also went to Barangay Potrero, Malabon City and held a street rally, and like the two mentioned cities, it was also deluged by residents.
Leni hops on motorbike
In General Trias, Cavite, Vice President Leni Robredo, now running for president, hitched a ride on the back of a motorcycle to get to her campaign rally on Friday night as the huge crowd clogged all roads leading to the venue.
From her campaign stop in Tanza, she headed to the General Trias Sports Park through a van, but she had to hop on the two-wheeler after getting stuck in heavy traffic for hours along Arnaldo Highway.
Leni’s security team approached a resident with a motorcycle if he could take the presidential candidate to the venue.
Clad in a red helmet that she borrowed from another rider, she arrived at the Sports Park past 8:30 p.m. to join the mammoth crowd estimated to reach as much as 47,000.
“Traffic was heavy and VP Leni needed to get to the event, so she resorted to the simplest, most straightforward solution,” Robredo’s spokesperson Barry Gutierrez told the Daily Tribune.
“Riding a motorcycle is not an issue for VP Leni. She is used to commuting,” he added.
In a social media post, a certain Kristine Danica Mariano narrated that her husband, Sherwin, was standing along a sidewalk when Leni’s staff approached him to ask if he could give a ride to the Vice President.
“My husband won’t be able to sleep because of happiness,” she wrote on Twitter.
At the campaign rally, Leni was welcomed by a sea of supporters clad in pink who were chanting her name.
They came carrying placards with the phrase “800K minus one,” a swipe to Governor Jonvic Remulla who promised 800,000 votes for survey frontrunner Bongbong Marcos.
“If this kind of strength you’re demonstrating tonight will be the same strength you will have until 9 May, we are going to win,” Leni said in her speech.
The crowd estimate here exceeded the 40,000-record set by “Kakampinks” in her bailiwick Iloilo City.
Leni and her team had been in Carmona town as early as 7 a.m. She also made campaign stops in Dasmariñas, Imus, and the towns of Noveleta, Rosario and Tanza.
Some 2.13 million votes are up for grabs in the province, which is also the hometown of another presidential bet, Senator Ping Lacson.
PDP Laban proclamation
Meanwhile, the dominant party Partido Demokratiko Pilipino Lakas ng Bayan (PDP Laban) has formally proclaimed its national candidates for the 2022 May Elections in a proclamation rally held in San Mateo, Rizal on Saturday.
Bannered under the “Tuloy ang Pagbabago” coalition, the ruling political group has officially thrown its support for the candidacies of vice-presidential bet and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio along with its fielded senatorial candidates — actor Robin Padilla, broadcaster Rey Langit, House Deputy Speaker Rodante Marcoleta, former Cabinet Secretaries Greco Belgica, Salvador “Sal” Panelo, John Castriciones and former Energy Undersecretary Astra Pimentel.
All seven senatoriables physically joined the event except for Belgica who was represented by Pederalismo ng Dugong Dakilang Samahan (PDDS) Secretary-General Glen Badon. Also missing was PDP Laban President and Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi.
“Tuloy ang Pagbabago! This is President Duterte’s marching orders to all the PDP Laban Senator to continue genuine empowerment of all Filipinos, especially to the poorest of the poor, neglected, minority, indigenous people and of course, to our next generation,” Cusi said in a press statement earlier in the day.
The proclamation rally would signal PDP Laban’s series of campaign events in the 2022 National Elections, Cusi said, adding it would show how it remains the “dominant party in the country.”
The group’s “11-point agenda for continuity” was also launched during the event.
“Because they are ‘Tatak Duterte,’ our PDP Laban senatorial candidates will continue the reform agenda of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and even institutionalize the President’s advocacies, vision, and ‘Tapang at Malasakit’ in all programs of the government,” he said.
“The PDP Laban has the proven track record that it can advance and deliver its 11-point Agenda for Continuity: (1) the fight against corruption; (2) Eradication of poverty; (3) Advancement of peace and order; (4) Ending the pandemic; (5) Defeating communist terrorism in the country; (6) Sustaining economic growth; (7) Generation of jobs; (8) Strengthening national defense and foreign relations; (9) Educational reforms; (10) Decentralization and local government empowerment; and, (11) Charter change and Federalism,” he added.
In wooing the voters, the senatorial bets vowed to continue the legacy programs of President Duterte including Marcoleta who said he would push for lower electricity costs by eradicating corruption in the power sector.