The Federation of Free Workers (FFW) on Friday called on detractors of Senator Grace Poe to respect the decision of the Supreme Court in throwing out all legal obstacles on the presidential run of the neophyte senator.
The next move, according to FFW president Jose Sonny Matula is “let the voters decide” on who would be the next rightful president of the Philippines.
On Wednesday, Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Nazareno and eight other magistrates of the 15-member Supreme Court voted yes to the presidential run of Poe. Six justices extremely disagreed.
The decision effectively disregarded the disqualification cases that were filed by Dean Amado Valdez, former Senator Fracisco “Kit” Tatad, Atty. Estrella Elamparo, and Prof. Antonio Contreras due to questions on the citizenship and residency of Poe.
Being a natural-born Filipino citizen and having a 10-year residency in the Philippines are two important requirements set by the 1987 Philippine Constitution for an individual to qualify to run for president of the country.
However, the Supreme Court has yet to release its written decision so that the stakeholders would know the exact statements of the highest court why it favored Poe.
Sources said the majority asserted that Poe was a “presumptive natural-born” citizen, therefore, she is presumed a natural-born Filipino citizen.
Matula, who is also a veteran labor lawyer, asserted that while Poe was allowed by the Supreme Court to run for president, FFW strongly maintains its support for the candidacy of Vice-President Jejomar Binay.
Matula described Binay as the only one among the five presidential candidates who is pro-labor and has a program for the workers. FFW is the only labor group that supports Binay.
The Partido Manggagawa (PM) supports Poe because the latter backs the workers’ party’s electoral battle on job regularization and better pay for the workers.
The Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP), through Sanlakas, also supports Poe and Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero’s vice-presidential run.
The Manila Times ran a story last week which revealed the P20 million deal between Sanlakas and Escudero for the purpose of campaigning against the return of the Marcoses to Malacañang, particularly Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos 2nd who is running for vice-president.
Leody de Guzman, BMP chairman and Sanlakas first nominee, has repeatedly denied that Sanlakas made such a deal.
The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) and the Associated Labor Unions (ALU), the two biggest labor federations in the country today, have not made up their final decision on which candidate to support.