MANILA, Philippines – Former Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr’s last talk with his standard-bearer in the May 2016 elections, the late Senator Miriam Santiago, was about how to handle his electoral protest.
“Nag-usap kami tungkol sa protesta ko sinasabi niya, binibigkas niya sa akin ‘yung kanyang experience nung tumakbo siyang presidente. Sinabi nya, pareho ng nangyari sa akin at ‘yung protesta mo baka puwedeng gawin ng ganito, puwedeng gawin ng ganyan,” Marcos told reporters during Santiago’s wake late Thursday evening, September 29.
(We talked about my protest. She told me that we had the same experience when she filed an electoral protest, that maybe I can do this, I can do that.)
Marcos was referring to the electoral protest he filed against Vice President Leni Robredo with the Presidential Electoral Tribunal.
Santiago, who ran for president for the first time in 1992, also filed a protest against then winner President Fidel Ramos over allegations he cheated her. Her protest was declared moot when she ran and won as senator in 1995.
Marcos was among the few politicians who visited the former senator on the first day of her wake. Santiago died on Thursday morning after a long battle with lung cancer.
Recalling his close relationship with Santiago at the Senate, Marcos said he had always sought advice from the brilliant legislator. Santiago, he said, also never failed to share with him her words of wisdom. (IN PHOTOS: The life and times of Miriam Defensor Santiago)
“We learned a lot from her and our discussions in the Senate were very fruitful,” he said in Filipino. “It was an honor for me to be chosen as her vice presidential candidate in the last elections,” he added.
Aside from Marcos, other lawmakers – former House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr, Ilocos Norte First District Representative Rodolfo Fariñas and former senator and incumbent Taguig Representative Pia Cayetano – visited Santiago Thursday night.