‘CHELebrate, don’t cry,’ Chel Diokno tells supporters after defeat

Rosette Adel - Philstar.com
âCHELebrate, donât cry,â Chel Diokno tells supporters after defeat
In this photo taken on May 8, 2019, opposition senatorial candidates Chel Diokno (front L), Florin Hilbay (front 2nd R), Romy Macalintal (front R partly obscured), Gary Alejano (2nd row L), Samira Gutoc (2nd row C), Mar Roxas (3rd row R), Erin Tanada (3rd row C) and Bam Aquino (3rd row L with glasses) take a selfie during a campaign rally in Manila, ahead of the midterm elections on May 13.
AFP / Ted Aljibe

MANILA, Philippines — For Otso Diretso’s senatorial candidate Chel Diokno, there are no losses in this campaign and all came out as winners even after he failed to make it to the top 12 of the 2019 senatorial race.

Diokno, a member of the Liberal Party and a veteran human rights lawyer, said his life has changed forever after his first senatorial bid. He currently ranks 21st in the senatorial race with over 6.1 million votes.

The opposition senatorial bet said he is not sad at all despite his loss. Instead, the legal counsel said he is inspired and overwhelmed by the support he received.

“I will tell you a story about a campaign that began with a few people and ended up with millions, supporting us,” Diokno said as he addressed his supporters on Tuesday evening.

Diokno earned support from the youth who dubbed him as “woke lolo.”

On Tuesday, hashtag “#SalamatChel” became the top trending topics with more than 18,300 tweets and counting nationwide.

As early as 2019, Diokno was urged to run not just for the Senate but also for president in the 2022 national elections.

During his press conference, Diokno read one of the letters addressed to him where he was asked to run by one of his supporters.

In jest, Diokno laughed off the clamor to run anew and said: “Hoy, wala akong sinabi ha (Hey, I didn’t say anything)”

Despite this, Diokno vowed to never stop fighting for the people who need him.

He cited that during the campaign, he reached out to people whom he said were awaken by the “truth.”

Diokno said his supporters do not have to apologize for his loss.

"So really this is a time for us to celeberate, kailangan magchelebrate tayo ngayon para wala nang iyak-iyakan. Tama na iyan, dahil bukas na bukas magsisimula tayo ulit,” Diokno said.

(So really this is a time for us to celebrate, we need to chelebrate today, no need to cry. Tomorrow, we will start anew.)

“Bukas na bukas kailangan mayroon pa tayong ma-woke. Isipin natin kung every day may ma-woke tayong isa at the end of one year de ilan na ang mawowoke satin....At the end of three years, wala nang makakapigil satin,” he added.

(Tomorrow we have to awaken people. Every day we get to wake up someone, many citizens will be awaken at the end of the year. In three years, we are unstoppable). 

“I will promise you that I will never give up. This fight will not end until we win. Thank you," he concluded.

Diokno is the dean of De La Salle University College of Law. He also heads Free Legal Assistance Group which handled the case of the victims of 1987 MV Doña Paz, as well as cases of kin of victims of the administration’s war on drugs.

He wanted to follow the footseps of his father, late senator Jose Diokno who founded the Commission on Human Rights.






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