Former House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano on Wednesday reiterated his desire to lead by example among candidates running for national positions in the May 2022 elections, saying topping pre-election surveys is not the objective of his campaign.
“Being number one is not the be-all and end-all of campaigning. Ang importante sa ‘kin (For me, what’s important) is to lead by example,” Cayetano told media at the sidelines of a capability-building seminar for local executives in Tagaytay City, Cavite on March 16, 2022.
The veteran lawmaker, who is gunning for a Senate comeback on a faith-based and values-oriented policy agenda, said the candidates’ words must match their actions and that they must take clear stands on issues.
“Kung magta-top ka na rin lang, pero tatahimik ka sa tingin mo ay mga mabibigat pa rin na mga isyu, or magna-number one ka nga pero ang plataporma mo ay health at environment pero nag-pollute ka naman, may mali d’un,” Cayetano said.
(If you stay at the top of the surveys, but you stay quiet on what you think are heavy issues, or you become number one but your platform is about health and environment yet your campaign creates pollution, there’s clearly something wrong there.)
The former Speaker has taken strong stances on a number of issues even before the campaign started, having called for a total ban on online cockfighting or e-sabong which he said poses a grave threat to society, especially to young Filipinos and overseas Filipino workers.
He also began an eco-friendly campaign in February and has asked his supporters to plant trees, mangroves, and urban gardens in their respective areas.
On Monday, thousands of bikers in 14 key cities and provinces across the country mounted simultaneous bike caravans in support of Cayetano’s Senate run and his call for the protection of the environment.
“It’s not for everyone, it’s not easy, but ako in this campaign, siguro sentimental na din, magti-thirty years na ako sa gobyerno. I want it to be meaningful, and for me it’s meaningful if I really stand up for what I believe in,” he said.
(It’s not for everyone, it’s not easy, but for me in this campaign, maybe I’m being sentimental, I’ve been in government for 30 years now. I want it to be meaningful, and for me it’s meaningful if I really stand up for what I believe in.)
Cayetano has consistently been among the top names in pre-election surveys for senatorial candidates. Earlier this week, both Pulse Asia and Manila Broadcasting Network put him among the top four preferred senatorial candidates among Filipino voters.