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MANILA, Philippines – The reporter who became a face of ABS-CBN’s Boto Mo iPatrol Mo (BMPM) campaign is now seeking votes as a congressional aspirant.
ABS-CBN reporter Marisol “Sol” Castillo Aragones confirmed to Rappler that she resigned from TV Patrol to run for congresswoman of the 3rd district of Laguna.
Aragones resigned from the show on Monday, September 17. She will host her last radio show on DZMM this Friday, September 21.
“Sobrang iyakan, sobrang mahirap na desisyon,” Aragones said in a phone interview. (I cried a lot. It was such a hard decision to make.)
Aragones, 34, has been with ABS-CBN for 13 years, covering BMPM, and the health and Metro Manila Development Authority beats.
The journalist will run under Vice President Jejomar Binay’s United Nationalist Alliance (UNA). She told Rappler she talked to UNA stalwart former President Joseph Estrada over the weekend and will take her oath this Saturday, September 22.
Fighting a dynasty, schoolmate
“Many politicians have been asking me to run but I always turned them down,” Aragones said.
In July this year, she said many residents came to her and asked her to run against the incumbent 3rd District of Laguna Rep Ma. Evita Arago, complaining that public funds were not being spent properly.
Incidentally, Aragones and Arago went to the same high school, Canossa College in San Pablo, Laguna. They were both student leaders in the school.
Aragones said Arago belongs to the ruling Liberal Party, and President Benigno Aquino III even stood as her wedding sponsor in 2010.
Asked what trigerred her decision to join politics, Aragones said it was when she found out that Arago’s father, lawyer Hizon Arago, plans to run for San Pablo mayor.
“Feeling ko dynasty na ito, lalong lumakas ang panawagan ng tao. Sinasabi ng tao na alam ko ang problema nila dahil nanggaling ako sa mahirap,” Aragones said. (I felt this is already a political dynasty, the call of the people became louder. People are saying I know their problems because I come from poverty.)
‘No different from writing a story’
Her father’s birthday celebration last August 23 was a turning point in her decision-making.
“Ang daming tao. Doon ko naisip: senyales na ito. Napaiyak ako sa dami ng taong dumalo. Pero dapat pumayag ang asawa ko. Pumayag siya. Sabi niya the same day, ‘Sige tumakbo ka na.’” (There were so many people. I thought: this is a sign. The number of people who came brought me to tears. But my husband must agree. On the same day, he did. He said, ‘Okay, go for it.’)
Aragones gave herself another week to think about it but finally decided.
“Iba ang nararamdaman ko eh pero iyak ako nang iyak dahil ayokong umalis din sa ABS. It’s my first formal job... sa ABS.” (I was having strange emotions. I kept crying because I didn't want to leave ABS. It’s my first job.)
Aragones is a graduate of Development Communication from the University of the Philippines in Los Baños, Laguna.
She started her broadcasting career as a writer in the public service show Hoy Gising then became a reporter and host. She was part of the ABS-CBN programs Kalye, Salamat Dok, and S.R.O. on DZMM
Asked what she will bring to the table as a journalist, she said, “It’s no different from writing a story. Dapat tatagos sa sikmura. Ganoon din ang public service, dapat basic needs and I will consult people constantly.” (It should hit the gut. Public service is like that, it should be about basic needs.)
Aragones is just one of many journalists who decided to enter politics. Former Vice President Noli de Castro and Senator Loren Legarda were famous news anchors of ABS-CBN prior to their political stint. De Castro is back as TV Patrol anchor.
In 2010, GMA7 reporter Maki Pulido ran to be representative of the first district of Pangasinan but lost. She eventually returned to the network. – Rappler.com
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