What Mocha Girls had to give up to support Duterte

Dharel Placido, ABS-CBN News

Mocha Girls with the youngest sibling of presumptive president Rodrigo Duterte, Benjamin, also known as Bong. Photo from the Facebook page of Mocha Uson

DAVAO CITY - Mocha Uson of the sexy girl group Mocha Girls said supporting presumptive president Rodrigo Duterte came at a price but she said the sacrifices were all worth it.

Speaking to ABS-CBN News, Uson, who became one of the online warriors for the tough-talking Davao City mayor, said not everyone agreed with her political views and this led to her group booking fewer shows.

"Nung una, mas nawalan kami ng mga shows kasi hindi naman sila lahat maka-Duterte at talagang kontrobersyal si mayor noon at maraming di pabor sa kanyang mga ginagawa. Nung kami ay sumuporta kay mayor, medyo nawalan kami ng shows dahil iba ang kanilang mga kandidato," Uson said.

She also noted that her group's shows in all of Duterte's campaign sorties were not paid. She said this did not matter to her because she was doing it for a certain cause.

"No talent fee. Ever since, from the beginning of the campaign to the last, wala kaming talent fee," she said.

"Pero now na nanalo, maraming mga victory parites at kami ay naiimbitahan pero voluntary itong mga pag-suporta namin at pagtugtog sa mga parties na ito," she said.

READ: Mocha Girls willing to quit sexy shows for Duterte

Mocha Uson, an ardent supporter of presumptive president Rodrigo Duterte, at the Royal Mandaya Hotel in Davao City. ABS-CBN News

With 3.6 million followers, Uson's Facebook page was a potent force for the Duterte campaign on the social media front, which had seen the most vicious of comments being exchanged by pro- and anti-Duterte Filipinos.

Now that Duterte has won by a landslide over closest rival Mar Roxas, Uson is calling for healing.

"It is time for healing. Kaya lang meron pa rin talagang ibang taong hindi matanggap ang pagkapanalo ni Duterte. Pero tayo, bilang mga supporters, pangungunahan natin ang pagkakaisa ng bawat Pilipino," she said.

She appealed to those who are not impressed with Duterte to give the long-time mayor of Davao City a chance.

"Makikita ninyo rin ang tunay na kakayanan ni Duterte. Just give him a chance," she said.

READ: Unite and help Duterte, Mocha tells critics

From being a political outsider, Duterte rose to the top of the surveys when it mattered, surging past erstwhile opinion polls frontrunners Grace Poe and Jejomar Binay.

Despite making gaffes that some analysts had said could cost him the election, Duterte managed to win the presidential race. Uson attributed Duterte’s victory to what she called a citizen-led campaign.

"It is a citizen-led campaign. Ibig sabihin ang mga tao talaga ang nagkampanya para kay mayor. Voluntary, walang bayad at talagang galing sa puso nila," she said.

"Worth it ang effort ng pagkampanya ng Pilipino kay Duterte, ang sakripisyo sa pag-hintay sa kanya sa rally ng mga mga kababayan under the heat of the sun, nagpapagawa ng kanya kanyang mga t-shirt. Worth it dahil meron tayong presidente na talagang tao ang pumili at naglagay sa kanya sa posisyon."

Mocha Girls at the so-called Duterte Town Square in Davao City. Photo from the Facebook page of Mocha Uson

Duterte drew flak when he made the controversial remark about an Australian missionary who was raped and killed during a hostage crisis in 1989. Uson believes Duterte followers were not swayed by the negative reactions about the mayor’s comment.

"Nag-research ang tao, bakit nga ba nasabi ni mayor yun? Yun pala he did not mean it as a joke. Tapos inalam ng mga tao ngayon kung ano ang background kung bakit nasabi yun, tuloy nalaman ng buong Pilipinas na inalay pala ni Duterte ang kanyang buhay para sa mga hostage. Kaya lalong naging mas mainit ang suporta ng tao kay Duterte dahil he offered his life in exchange for the life of the hostages," she said.

Meanwhile, Uson believes that the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) community in the Philippines will flourish under the Duterte administration, noting how the mayor had voiced support for equality.

"Maganda ang mangyayari sa mga kapatid nating LGBTs dahil dito sa Davao City ang LGBTs protektado, walang diskriminasyon, lahat pantay-pantay," she said.

Asked whether she would call on Duterte to back same-sex unions, Uson said: "I think ang sagot din niya na (nakasalalay) sa Congress. Kung ano man ang rules and regulations and law ng Church at government, sila na ang makakapag-decide."