As a Filipino citizen, I have been lamenting because of the unfortunate result of the candidacy of Leni RobredoKiko Pangilinan, and their senatorial team. As I lament, I’m reflecting on the seeming triumph of untruth and injustice. In the next six years, we will go through another socio-political darkness akin to the Marcos Martial Law and the Duterte War on Drugs. But hope, faith, and love allow me to see our short-term loss and our long-term victory as advocates of justice, peace, and reconciliation. I’m disappointed with the popular votes, but I see opportunities for a protracted, nonviolent, radical transformation of our land and our people.

Leni Robredo lost the 2022 Philippine election for presidency to Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.: This will be the beginning of the rehabilitation of the Marcos dynasty. Photo by ABS-CBN.

Lamenting the seeming triumph of untruth and injustice

The result of the Philippine Election 2022 has been devastating for me and for the 14 million people who voted for Leni Robredo. I’m in a period of lamentation right now. Lamenting is a healthy process, especially when there is systemic disinformation done through, and against, the poor and when there is self-deception among the majority of the people whom we love.

There’s a whole collection of lamentations in an ancient scripture too. It’s there for that purpose — to help us with our lamentations.

As I lament, I constantly submit my whole being:
:: to the Creativity of the Creator — to be a funnel of creative approaches towards a nation characterized by truth-and-love, by justice-and-mercy;
:: to the Peace of Christ — to be a funnel of a long-lasting peace based on justice that will lead to reconciliation; and,
:: to the Energy of the Holy Spirit — to be a funnel of strength, sustainability, and regeneration as we face the challenges of being light in this socio-political darkness.

I’ve been getting messages, some spiteful, that I have to “move on,” “respect the will of the people,” “be sport,” “accept the victory” of the one who seems to have won the election, and “cooperate with the winner.” 

Well, I’m moving on with my normal life — joyfully doing inclusive development activities and social entrepreneurial coaching among the marginalized sectors of our society. At the same time, I will keep the radar of my critical thinking up and sharp regarding the truth about the result of this election.

Motivated by my love for the Creator, for the people, and for the land, I’m committed and prompted to continue advocating and practicing the two paradoxical twins energizing peace and reconciliation: truth-and-love, justice-and-mercy. These are the real energizers of genuine reconciliation. Without these, claims of peace and reconciliation would just be a mockery and instrument of suppression as corrupt, powerful political dynasties, of all colors, perpetuate a system of injustice and a mechanism of oppression.

Marcos-Duterte tandem over Robredo-Pangilinan tandem: 31 million of the 65.7 million registered voters chose Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. as President of the Republic of the Philippines. Sara Duterte got the same number of votes as Vice President. This election fell far short of “free and fair” due to rampant vote-buying, politically-motivated violence, and serious shortcomings in the electoral process, according to an interim report by the International Observer Mission (IOM). Photo by Pahayag.

Short-term loss, long-term victory

I believe we won the hearts and minds of the voters from 8% in October 2021 to 28% today — in just a few months! Imagine how much we will continue to grow in quantity because of the quality of our motive, values, character, ways, and means. Because of our positive social and ethical outlook, they accuse us of being self-righteous.

We’re not self-righteous.

We’re simply committed to seek genuine righteousness instead, and we’re crying for real justice.

I noticed that trolls and fanatics kept on bashing and cursing at the “Thank You” event of Leni & Kiko last 13 May. Are they bothered that our hopes and love-energies continue? Should they be celebrating instead? Can’t they move on and accept the fact that we’ve lost the 2022 election? Are they really confident that they have won this 2022 election?

But look! Our defeat is short-term. As my friends in the military always tell me when I’m down: “You simply lost this battle, but you’re winning your war.” They won the control of the republic; but we are winning the hearts and minds of the 14 million people who are critically thinking about, and radically loving, our people and our land. We will help the rest of them to love our country with a critical mind and a compassionate heart.

Quality produces quantity! Our loss is short-term. Our victory is long-term.

“We are winning the nation.” Photo by Team Leni Robredo.

The re-energized People Power continues

The energies of hope are harmonizing. More and more, I’m realizing that hope is not dependent on winning Malacañang — the seat of power in the Philippines. Let them celebrate for winning the numbers.

We are winning the nation!

Transparency, truth, justice, and faithful stewardship will win over thievery, lies, injustice, and plunder. Energized by radical love, radical transformation is happening among those who are joining us.

We know it in our hearts. We’ll keep winning them over — in the next 6, 60, or even 600 years.

We’re just beginning!

We’ll stop thinking in terms of merely winning the election. We’ll start thinking and behaving in terms of long-term inclusive development for our land and for our people — beyond political parties.

And yes, we’ll also win elections along our journey.

“We will demonstrate good public servanthood as civil societies through our actions and words.” Photo by Team Leni Robredo.

Based on what I’ve heard from Leni Robredo’s “Thank You” speech last 13 May, our pink campaign will be reborn as a nationwide non-government organization. On 01 July 2022, we will be formally structured as a radical transformation movement energized by radical love to serve all people of different political colors. We will demonstrate good public servanthood as civil societies through our actions and words. The politically-insecure powers and their trolls will falsely accuse the Pink Movement as ”rebels,” ”shadow government,” and other red-tagging terminologies. But we know who we are. We are concerned citizens who serve the people as non-government organization, as a nationwide civil society network of networks.

As one of the millions of ground advocates of this dream, I suggest the following: 
1. Focus on consolidating our energies and resources on community organization;
2. Stop arguing with the trolls and the fanatics spiting us — they’ll just drain our energies;
3. Prepare and equip ourselves for mobilization — local, provincial, regional, national;
4. Do a SWOT analysis of our campaign and include that in our training processes; 
5. Prepare, establish, consolidate, and strengthen the architectural and technological design of our information, communication, and education systems for the long haul — based on truth, justice, historical authenticity, stewardship, and transparency. 

I hope there will be stronger emphases on human rights education and values training — like, ‘truth-telling as basic social value,’ ‘financial accountability,’ and ‘equality under the rule of law.’ These are basic in the inner developmental aspects of our being — as individuals and as a nation — that would energize us to critically understand why we are mired in poverty and how to liberate ourselves from this subjugation.

I constantly remind myself of this verse from the Book of Lamentations. “Your steadfast love, O Lord, never ceases; your mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22-23). These truths prompt me to think creatively, to plan strategically, and to implement a wider inclusive development program.

We’re in a very exciting segment of our history.

We will remember and document these realities well.

We will carry on with our dream!

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