Monday, December 21, 2009

Pacquiao party turns rivals Satur, Bongbong into buddies

12/21/2009 | 10:34 PM

Original Story:

One should give it to Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao for turning long-time political rivals, Ilocos Norte Rep. Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. and Bayan Muna Rep. Satur Ocampo, into buddies, even for a night only.

During Nacionalista Party’s party to formally welcome Pacquiao into its fold Monday night, Marcos was seen extending his hand to greet Ocampo – a gesture that sent everybody at the Laurel House in Mandaluyong City cheering.

In an interview with reporters, Marcos said the gesture should not be given any meaning, as Ocampo is a fellow member of the House of Representatives.

“Walang katuturan yun. Bumati lang yung magkakilala na kapwa congressman (That’s nothing. It’s just a greeting between two congressmen)," the only son of the late President Ferdinand Marcos Sr. said.

Both Marcos and Ocampo are in the NP senatorial lineup for next year’s elections.

To recall, Ocampo – along with Gabriela Rep. Liza Maza – had refused to be included in the same ticket as Marcos, noting his father’s human rights abuses during his term as president.

Maza and Ocampo, however, agreed to join NP after it severed its ties with the Marcos-led Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (KBL) party.

Fight goes on

Ocampo, for his part, said his gesture toward Marcos did not mean that he has set aside his fight to recover the ill-gotten wealth from the latter’s family and compensation for the victims of human rights abuses during the martial law.

“Hindi ibig sabihin [ng pakikipagkamay] na binabalewala na ang laban (I shook his hand but that doesn’t mean our issues are over)," the left-leaning party-list lawmaker said.

He added that he accepted NP’s offer to be in its senatorial slate despite Marcos’ presence because he supports the tandem of Senators Manuel Villar and Loren Legarda.

“Hindi naman si Bongbong ang sinusuportahan ko. Ipu-pursue ko pa din ang kaso laban sa kanyang tatay. Ipu-pursue ang recovery ng ill-gotten wealth at compensation sa mga biktima ng human rights violations," he said.

(It is not Bongbong whom I’m supporting. I will still pursue the case against his father as well as the recovery of the ill-gotten wealth and compensation for human rights victims.)

He, however, said he would not raise these issues during the campaign in order for them to focus on their common platform, which is eradicating poverty.

Snubbing incident?

Earlier in the day, observers noticed that Maza and Marcos tried to avoid each other when they greeted Villar's wife, Las PiƱas Rep Cynthia Villar, who was present in the event.

Maza denied that she ignored Marcos. "Nagbatian naman kami, baka hindi mo lang nakita (We greeted each other. Maybe you just didn’t see it)," Maza told GMANews.TV with a smile. - KBK, GMANews.TV

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