MANILA, Philippines – Olympic weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz and former volleyball player Gretchen Ho were both left confused after learning that they were included in the new ouster matrix released by Malacañang.
Diaz cleared herself from the issue, noting she dedicates all of her time in her goal of reaching the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
“Hindi ko alam kung sinong nini-link niyo sa akin. Ako as an athlete, sobrang busy po ako at wala akong time sa kung ano pong sinasabi niyo,” Diaz said in a video posted on her official Facebook page.
(I don’t know who you’re linking to me. As an athlete, I’m very busy and I have no time with whatever you’re claiming me as a part of.)
“Sana po huwag po kayong ganoon na idadawit niyo ang pangalan ng isang tao na sobrang busy at sobrang sinasakripisyo ang lahat para sa Pilipinas, ginagawa ang lahat para irepresenta ang Pilipinas sa weighlifting.”
(I hope that you don’t include the name of someone who is very busy and sacrifices a lot for the Philippines, someone who does everything just to represent the Philippines in weightlifting.)
The 2016 Olympic silver medalist called the matrix baseless. (LOOK: Gretchen Ho, Hidilyn Diaz brush off ‘Bikoy’ links in new ouster matrix)
“Suddenly, ilalagay lang ‘yung pangalan sa isang matrix na walang basehan. Ako, as an athlete, focused pa rin ako sa kung anong ginagawa ko, focused pa rin ako sa dreams and goals ko para sa Olympics.”
(Suddenly, you will find out your name has been included in a matrix that has no basis. As an athlete, I’m still focused in what I to do and I’m focused in my dreams and goals for the Olympics.)
Ho, meanwhile, said she was shocked following her inclusion in the matrix considering she has not once issued a statement against the current administration.
“I have never said anything about the administration or a politically polarizing tweet. Wala akong naalalang nag-tweet ako. Even the Bikoy videos, I have never seen them, I have never shared,” Ho told Rappler through a phone call.
(I have never said anything about the administration or a politically polarizing tweet. I don’t remember any tweet. Even the Bikoy videos, I have never seen them, I have never shared.)
“If somebody like me can immediately be tagged as a destabilizer, parang wala naman atang basehan ‘yun. Anybody can be tagged. Ewan ko, parang sobrang out of nowhere kasi ‘yun eh.”
(If somebody like me can immediately be tagged as a destabilizer, I don’t think there’s any basis for that. Anybody can be tagged. I don’t know, it’s just out of nowhere.)
When asked about why she thinks she was involved in the matrix, Ho cited a tweet she sent out calling out trolls as a part of her advocacy for digital literacy.
“But how can you reason with paid trolls and egg heads? It’s a warfare online, and we’re getting caught in between. Be smart and discerning, folks. Don’t let the internet fool you,” she tweeted late in March.
But how can you reason with paid trolls & egg heads? It’s a warfare online, and we’re getting caught in between.— Gretchen Ho (@gretchenho) March 29, 2019
Be smart & discerning, folks.
Don’t let the internet fool you.
By “egg head,” Ho said she was referring to anonymous Twitter accounts, which have an egg as display picture to hide their identities.
“May nag-reply sa akin na troll. Sabi ko sa troll, ‘Hi troll, kumusta konsensiya mo?’ Inaasar ko lang ‘yung troll. And then it turns out, that troll was a DDS troll,” Ho said regarding her tweet.
(A troll replied to me so I replied back, ‘Hi troll, how’s your conscience?’ I was just teasing the troll. And then it turns out, that troll was a DDS troll.)
“Siyempre ‘yung mga DDS, nagalit sa akin kasi akala nila… they misunderstood it, they put in on Facebook, took it out of context saying that I was calling all the Duterte supporters egg heads.”
(Of course, the DDS were angry at me, they misunderstood it, they put it on Facebook, took it out of context saying that I was calling all Duterte supports egg heads.)
“Siguro ‘yun ‘yung most probably cause that I could think of. But what I really meant by that, I was attacking all trolls from all sides. It was against disinformation, it wasn’t against any political party.”
(That’s what I think of as most probably the cause that I could think of. But what I really meant by that, I was attacking all trolls from all sides. It was against disinformation, it wasn’t against any political party.)
Dinner with Digong
Ironically, the day the matrix came out, Ho had already attended a private dinner for athletes and artists hosted by President Rodrigo Duterte.
As a media practitioner, she accepted the invitation to the event to prove she takes no sides.
“I decided to go because I also want to show that I am neither red nor yellow. Wala akong political party, I am not tied up with anybody. Being there was a sign that I was neutral, that I’m not on anybody’s side,” Ho said.
(I decided to go because I also want to show that I am neither red or yellow. I have no political parties. I am not tied up with anybody. Being there was a sign that I was neutral, that’s I’m not on anybody’s side.)
“Palagi namang sinasabi sa akin na as part of the media, our duty is to open communication lines and not shut doors down.”
(People always tell me that as part of the media, our duty is to open communication lines and not shut doors down.) – Rappler.com