Team PNoy bets see Sabah crisis not affecting campaign

March 10, 2013 6:21 am 

By Jelly Musico

MANILA, March 9 -– President Benigno Aquino III may have been receiving criticisms from few individuals over his handling of the Sabah crisis but Team PNoy senatorial candidates expressed optimism it won’t affect their chances of winning in the May 13 mid-term elections.

Re-electionist Aquilino Pimentel III said the Sabah issue is very complicated but “as (of) now it is not affecting our campaign.”

”As we go around, people continued to receive us and President Aquino in our campaign sorties,” Pimentel said in an interview during the team's Davao City sortie.

He said the Sabah crisis that has claimed 60 lives, including 52 followers of Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III, is so complicated that even people are having a hard time to come out with their own opinion.

Pimentel is hoping the violence in Sabah between Malaysian law enforcers and Kiram’s followers will be immediately resolved and discuss their problem in a peaceful manner.

Former Sen. Ramon Magsaysay Jr. believed the effect of the Sabah tension “could even be positive” on chances of Team PNoy candidates.

”It could even be positive because of strong leadership of President Aquino,” Magsaysay said.

Magsaysay called for President Aquino and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razakon to talk for possible ceasefire.

Senatorial candidate Sonny Angara said the crisis will not affect their chances of winning because of the President’s firm stand for Kiram’s followers to go home and discuss their claim on Sabah in a diplomatic way.

”I see no effect in our campaign because the President has been monitoring the situation in Sabah. He is focused on not changing his action,” Angara said.

Team PNoy spokesman Rep. Miro Quimbo of Marikina agreed with Angara, saying “this issue is localized.”

”Overall, the President has displayed what kind of leadership he has. I think once this crisis is over, the trust of the people towards the President will become even stronger,” Quimbo said.

On the other hand, Team PNoy campaign manager Sen. Franklin Drilon said the Sabah crisis will not reflect on the effort of the Liberal Party-led coalition to get a 12-0 sweep of the senatorial race on May 13.

President Aquino is actively campaigning for the Team PNoy candidates that also include Bam Aquino, Alan Peter Cayetano, Antonio Trillanes IV, Cynthia Villar, Jamby Madrigal, Rizal Hontiveros, Francis Escudero and Loren Legarda.

In a campaign rally in Davao City, President Aquino explained why he cannot send troops in Malaysia to support Kiram’s followers.

”They say I am not pro-Filipino, that what I am doing is not enough. It seems what they want for us to do is to deploy our entire armed forces and join them in their violent means, like pushing our countrymen into disaster,” President Aquino said.

”Do they want us to submit our 95 million Filipinos into such chaos? Who has no consideration for our fellow Filipinos now?,” the President asked critics, including Sultan Kiram.

President Aquino has been appealing to the sultan of Sulu and his followers in Sabah to return to the country and peacefully discuss the Sabah issue.

The Sabah crisis started a week ago when firefight broke out between Malaysian royal army and Kiram’s armed followers, resulting into the killing of 60 people including eight Malaysian police.

Last Feb 12, a group of armed men land on the shores of Lahad Datu, forcing Malaysian police to cordon the area. Later, the group has been identified as supporters of Kiram.

Two days after sending mercy ship to fetch Kiram’s followers, President Aquino issued on Feb 26 his first warning to the supporters of Kiram but they refused to heed the President’s calls.

On March 7, Sultan Kiram declared unilateral ceasefire after United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon called for an end of violence in Sabah.

Malaysia, however, rejected Kiram’s ceasefire plea and instead urged the armed group to surrender unconditionally. (PNA)



8 Responses to “Team PNoy bets see Sabah crisis not affecting campaign”

  1. carlitomadlansacay on March 10th, 2013 4:44 pm

    I admire our President’s hardwork kahit may campaign I know for sure that he’s doing his best to fix our country’s problem in sabah..

  2. Juniver Perez on March 10th, 2013 4:59 pm

    sa totoo lang nakakamangha ang pinapakitang concern ng ating Presidente, dapat sinusuportahan natin sya sa kanyang desisyon. ang problema dito ay si kiram. sya ang nagdala ng mga inosenteng filipino papuntang saba para ipaglaban ang pansarili nyang interes..

  3. LAFANZ on March 10th, 2013 8:50 pm

    the sabah issue is quite sad. Let’s not make the situation worse. the president is doing the right thing by negotiating peacefully. no more bloodshed please, this can be resolved without guns firing….

  4. tabletoplightQ on March 10th, 2013 8:54 pm

    Team PNoy’s campaign wont be affected. why? because the president is playing it right. in this situation, violence is a very bad approach.

  5. ATI23 on March 11th, 2013 2:26 am

    ”They say I am not pro-Filipino, that what I am doing is not enough.
    It seems what they want for us to do is to deploy our entire armed forces and join them in their violent means,
    like pushing our countrymen into disaster,” The president’s appoach is the way to go. Don’t start going personal and call him a non pro-filipino because he’s not acting. he is, but not agrresively because
    everybody doesn’t want any more bloodshed.

  6. carleyruy on March 11th, 2013 2:28 am

    Go home na kasi! stop the bloodshed!

  7. jeramaya on March 11th, 2013 2:29 am

    they are going on their own and the pres gets criticism for it? if they send troops or aid it will make matters worse. what needs to happen is that they go home and discuss the issue.

  8. samsunglover on March 11th, 2013 2:31 am

    Team PNoy’s campaign won’t be affected because the president is taking care of the issue with a cool head. we want less bloodshed and he’s trying to do that peacefully.