MANILA – Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) President Archbishop Socrates Villegas urged Filipino voters to cast their votes wisely. He also reminded them to end ‘political dynasties’ and reject ‘the notoriously corrupt’ in the coming national elections.
“A person who aspires for high office but who, because of inexperience, will be totally dependent on advisers is not the best possible candidate for national positions,” Archbishop Villegas said in a statement of the church’s voters education campaign.
“The exercise of the right of suffrage is not only a political right, it is also a moral obligation… While politicians plan and strategize, and, this early, find ways of circumventing the law against premature campaigning, the Church cannot be remiss in its obligation of forming the consciences of Catholic and Christian voters,” he added.
Archbishop Villegas continued.
“Do not vote for family members running for the same positions as family members before them to perpetrate the family’s hold on public office,” he said, reminding voters yet again to choose candidates who are ‘capable of leading and serving with probity, high above suspicion, and with skill, competence and wisdom that comes from abiding faith.’
“There is no monopoly on ability for government, and truly no one in government is indispensable… Vote, not because you have been paid, or promised bounty, not because you or your relatives have been promised employment or privilege but because you trust a person to lead the community and to lead the country,” he added.
Archbishop Villegas, however, did not specify the names of the possible candidates he was referring to in his letter. But he was firm on reminding voters not to ‘readily jump on the bandwagon of condemnation in the absence of incontrovertible evidence.’
Lastly, the archbishop asked the public not to sell their votes.
“Just as the discerning voter will not be easily won over by all the flattery in favor of one candidate, neither should a voter allow ‘demolition jobs’ to dissuade him from choosing a person who is truly fit for office,” he concluded.