Former House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano on Wednesday said the winners of the May 2022 elections will face difficult challenges as the country works hard to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a media interview on February 16, 2022, Cayetano said while he is grateful that he has been consistently among the top choices of voters in recent surveys for senatorial preferences, he is aware that a victory in the 2022 polls means hard work for the candidates.
“Salamat sa Diyos at sa ating kababayan. Grabe ang trabaho next term. Kahit sinong manalo, dahil sa pandemic at dahil sa lahat ng recovery na kailangan, talagang all hands on deck. It’s one of those elections na kahit manalo ka, hindi ganun kadali ang trabaho,” he said.
(I thank the Lord and our fellow Filipinos. We have our work cut out for us next term. Whoever wins, it will be all hands on deck because of the pandemic and because of all the recovery work that must be done. It is one of those elections where after you win, you will have to work very hard.)
Cayetano said he decided to run as an independent in his comeback trail to the Senate so he can both support and criticize the presidential candidates as they lay out their plans for the recovery of the country from the pandemic.
“‘Pag tumakbo kasi tayong independent, pwede pong purihin ang magagandang programa ng kahit sinong partido, kahit sinong kandidato, pero pwede rin akong magsalita laban sa kanila kung mali ang stand nila sa mga isyu na ‘yan,” he said.
(If we run as an independent, we can praise the good programs of any party and any candidate and we can also speak out and criticize them when they make a wrong stand on important issues.)
He said he is also able to see beyond party lines and into the greater needs of the country for the coming years.
“Sa panahon na ito, sa tingin ko, tulong-tulong ang kailangan. Napakahirap ng recovery sa next administration. We will need people who will be truly independent and speak out for the people,” he said.
(During these times, what we need is cooperation. Recovery will be the greatest challenge for the next administration. We need people who will be truly independent and speak out for the people.)
He also said his record speaks for itself when it comes to supporting leaders or political parties.
“Kita niyo naman po y’ung record ko. Y’ung tama, tama. Y’ung mali, mali, (What’s right is right, what’s wrong is wrong)” he said.
As for which presidential candidate he is rooting for, Cayetano said he can work with whoever wins the election, especially since being a long-time lawmaker, he is familiar with most of them.
But to increase voter information on the aspirants in the upcoming election, Cayetano called for more forums in which all candidates participate, saying it is of utmost importance for voters to become familiar with them and their platforms.
“I’d really like to have more forums. Lalo po sa radio, abot y’un sa ba sulok ng ating bansa. Kasi napakaimportante na marinig talaga y’ung plataporma. Hindi lang y’ung makita y’ung kandidato, hindi lang y’ung ma-entertain, pero y’ung marinig talaga paano niya gagawin y’ung mga pinapangako niya,” Cayetano said.
(I’d really like to have more forums. Especially on radio, because it reaches every corner of our country. It’s important that we not only see or get entertained by the candidates but that we hear their platforms and how they will fulfill their promises.)