A 50-vehicle Biyahe ni Leni caravan rolled around the densely Filipino-populated areas in Daly City and South San Francisco to kick off the presidential campaign of Vice-president Leni Robredo this weekend.
The campaign reportedly caught fire not just in the Philippines but also in the San Francisco Bay Area despite a rainy Northern California weather last October 23.
Filipino Americans supporters of Robredo came up with their own version of the Biyahe ni Leni that was also happening in around 30 major areas practically covering the whole Philippines.
Dubbed the weekend Caravan of Hope, volunteers came in force in their vehicles adorned with tarpaulins, posters, ribbons, balloons, artwork and costumes and excitedly took turns chanting and cheering each other in a presidential campaign that they intend to conduct at least once a month leading up to the May 2022 elections.
The Bay Area motorcade started at a popular Filipino food chain branch in Mission Street in Daly City and ended in a favorite Filipino shopping and food complex at Callan Street in South San Francisco
In addressing participants, Filipino American Human Rights Alliance (FAHRA) leader Ago Pedalizo revealed that organizers arranged a virtual video meeting with fellow Filipino leaders from Macau, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, from Europe and from the Middle East.
“We are organizing different campaign events in the next three months. This time we are doing this in solidarity with the caravan/motorcade that has just happened in the Philippines in full support of Leni Robredo for 2022.” Pedalizo announced. “Tapos na po ang pananakot at pagnanakaw. If we will not do anything, we may be looking forward to the restoration of the Marcoses and the extension of Duterte rule in the next six years.”
In a later interview, Pedalizo added that they are so glad that the people in the Philippines and in the US are taking actions without the benefit of the alleged $10 billion ill-gotten Marcos wealth “but we will have the support of the people.”
Organizer, Violy Reyes views the coming elections as really important “as we do not want another six years of Duterte and the return of the Marcoses to power “.
“We are also doing the caravan to reach out to the community, to remind to vote. To organize and educate our friends , relatives neighbors to vote wisely as this is for the future of our kids and for the love of our mother land,” Reyes said.
The next caravans are slated for October 31, in Los Angeles, DC and Chicago on November 15in Daly City and December 12 in Daly City and LA.
US Pinoy For Good Government leader and lawyer Rodil Rodis revealed that he and Filipino leader Loida Nicola Lewis initiated the filing of a 42-page citizenship complaint against Energy Sec. Alfonso Cusi, alleged close crony of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte businessman Dennis Uy and several others for the reported acquisition of Uy of the Chevron Malampaya shares that was grossly underpriced.
The Malampaya gas field in Palawan supplies an estimate 40 percent of the energy needs of the Philippines, instead of totally depending on Saudi Arabia and other oil-producing countries. The complaint against Cusi is pending since last year.
“What they did two years ago: they sold it to Dennis Uy at an incredible bargain basement price of only $450 million instead of $600 million which was already a bargain price. But they were maneuver a lower price of $450 million,” Rodil maintained. “Dennis Uy set up his company with a $100 capitalization. The rest was funded by Chinese Bank and a New Zealand Bank majority of which is owned by the Chinese.”
Former Supreme Court justice Antonio Carpio was said to have called the deal as “the biggest presidential gift to a political crony in Philippine history that dwarfs anything that any of the Marcos or Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo cronies ever received” and Uy is all the while being backed up by a Chinese bank.
“Once they control Malampaya, they could control how much energy goes to the Philippines, oil in the future and they can control the politics of the country with their (grip on) oil,” Rodis said.
The case before the Ombudsman is now proceeding despite the call of Cusi for complainants to go to the Philippines where Cusi said complainants can be within reach of the Philippine justice system.
Rodil said that it ended with Loida and him filing the case because once it is in the Philippines, they would be subject to the Philippine Justice system if they were named as complainants.
“It is the role of Filipinos in America. We are not just observers from the outside. We are also in the fight in the Philippines especially because many of us are dual citizens. And being dual citizens, we have the right to defend our country and to make sure it doesn’t continue to be raped by these corrupt cronies of Duterte and Marcos,” said Rodis.
Leader Donny de Leon disclosed that their Tarla88778888i89io9iqueños USA helped organize the Tarlaqueños for Leni Caravan.
Tarlaqueños launched their “Pink Caravan” early in the morning on Saturday with some 800 decorated vehicles and approximately 1,500 Tarlac natives participating,” De Leon said. “It was organic, electric, inclusive, and I’m loving it! This is truly people’s campaign. So inspiring.”