Senator Leila de Lima on Friday, during the commemoration of Jose Rizal’s martyrdom, warned the public against turning a blind eye to society’s abuses – a statement that could be taken as a jab against the Duterte administration. Current top breaking Philippine headlines regarding the nation, world, metro manila, regions and exclusive special investigative reports.
Published December 30, 2016 7:51pm
Senator Leila de Lima on Friday, during the commemoration of Jose Rizal’s martyrdom, warned the public against turning a blind eye to society’s abuses — a statement that could be taken as a jab against the Duterte administration.
“Tandaan sana natin: Hangga’t may nagbubulag-bulagan sa katotohanan, magpapatuloy ang panlilinlang at pang-aabuso ng ilan; hangga’t marami ang nananahimik, laging mangingibabaw ang takot at dahas,” De Lima said in a statement.
De Lima, a former justice secretary, has been a vocal critic of President Rodrigo Duterte, particularly his violent war against illegal drug syndicates that is being linked to the spate of extrajudicial killings of drug suspects in the past six months.
In her statement, De Lima asked: “Ilang Rizal o Elias pa kaya ang mapapatay, ilang musmos o inosenteng sibilyan pa ang madadamay, bago tayo kumilos at mahinto ang karahasan sa ating lipunan?”
Elias is a character in Rizal’s famous novel, “Noli Me Tangere.”
De Lima’s colleagues, meanwhile, urged the public to emulate Rizal, with Senator Francis Pangilinan pointing out that Rizal was a “millennial” during his era, and Senator Loren Legarda noting Rizal’s resilience.
“Wala pang 25 ang edad ni Ka Pepe nang isulat niya ang Noli Me Tangere, ang nobelang naglantad sa mapaniil at katawa-tawang kalagayan ng mga Pilipino noong ika-19 na siglo. Parang ‘millennial’ din siya noong panahon niya. Millennial na may pakialam,” Pangilinan said in a separate statement.
He also noted that Rizal, despite being called a hypocrite, sensitive, and rebel, still continued what he thought is needed to be done for the country.
“Hindi dapat mamatay para ituring tulad ni Ka Pepe. At araw-araw may tumutugon sa pagtawag ng kabayanihan, hindi lang ang mga makabagong bayaning OFW natin. Marami rin ang bayaning narito lang sa Pilipinas at sinasagot o pilit sinasagot ang hamon ng kahirapan at di pagkakapantay-pantay,” he said.
Legarda, for her part, urged Filipinos to emulate Rizal’s nationalism and resiliency.
“Rizal was the epitome of strength and resiliency and overcame the monumental challenges he faced as we know from our nation’s history. He drew strength from his family, his faith and his beloved nation. I hope Filipinos would follow his example,” she stressed. —John Ted Cordero/KBK, GMA News