Bello open to possible Cabinet position offers but not from Marcos

Gillan Ropero, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 28 2022 11:27 AM

Vice presidential aspirant Walden Bello. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News
Vice presidential aspirant Walden Bello. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - Vice presidential candidate Walden Bello said Monday he would consider possible Cabinet position offers from all presidential aspirants, but not from former senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos.

The vice presidential bet of Partido Lakas ng Masa believes it's "better for me to be outside governance circles to be able to give constructive advice from the outside."

"I would consider it with all other candidates but certainly not with Mr. Marcos," he told ANC's Headstart.

He also criticized the absence of Marcos and his running mate Davao City mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio for their absence in the televised debates by CNN Philippines over the weekend.

"Somebody who don't engage in this are hiding something. This is definitely a very undemocratic gesture. They feel by accounting on voters’ ignorance about their records or non-records, in the case of mayor Sara Duterte they're counting on this ignorance to propel them into power," he said.

"The truth of the matter is they're hiding a lot. National unity based on national amnesia. They want to erase the past."

Bello said he was "disappointed" that none of the presidential candidates mentioned Marcos' name when they alluded to his absence.

"I think this is the sickness of politicians that they're scared of challenging one another directly," he said.

Should Marcos win, Bello said he would be "tempted" to meet with him for a dialogue if given the chance but he was "worried... I would start punching him."

"Just to prevent any violence I would not go to that meeting because I could not stand another Marcos having sneaked into power by fooling our people," he said.

When asked who he would choose as his president if labor leader Leody de Guzman did not run, Bello said he would be "really conflicted."

"If he were not there, I would really have to seriously think of whether I should support the VP or whether to just not endorse anybody."

"I fear (Vice President) Leni Robredo would just bring back this elite democracy that characterized EDSA."

Bello said he would never regret joining the Communist Party of the Philippines from 1974 until the late 1980s.

"I was the one who did a study of violation of human rights but basically I moved with others to a perspective of democratic socialism. I will never regret that period of my life because that was the time I spent bringing down a dictatorship," he said.

Should he and De Guzman win, Bello said he would reopen peace talks with the CPP.

"If peace negotiations could be achieved w the MILF and the Bangsamoro movement, why can we not have good peace negotiations with the CPP-NPA and to the whole country as a whole," he said.

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