Arroyo disappointed over TU Senate debacle — Zubiri

Jun. 06, 2007

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is quite disappointed and exasperated over the outcome of the senatorial elections and blames the alleged failure of local government units to deliver at least five Team Unity (TU) candidates to the Senate, an administration candidate said on Tuesday.

TU bet and outgoing Bukidnon Representative Juan Miguel Zubiri said Arroyo vented her feelings during a meeting in Malacaang last Saturday, before she left for Rome.

Medyo masama ang loob nya (Arroyo) kasi akala nya at the very least, makaka-deliver yung local government units or yong [administrations political] machinery ng at least five senators sa Magic 12 [She felt a bit bad because she thought at the very least, the local government units or the machinery would deliver five senators to the Magic 12], Zubiri told a small group of reporters, referring to the number of Senate seats up for grabs during the May 14 elections.

He said that, in many cases, administration mayoralty and gubernatorial candidates thought only of [their] survival and no longer campaigned for the TU candidates, so Maam [Arroyo] felt bad.

Zubiri also pointed to the perceived rift between the ruling Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD) and the Kabalikat ng Malayang Pilipino (Kampi or Partner of the Free Filipino) as one of the reasons for the drubbing the administrations senatorial slate received.

Current tallies have eight Genuine Opposition bets, and two independent and TU bets each in the winning circle.

Before the elections, the administration boasted its control of local governments would deliver the votes needed to give the TU slate an overwhelming Senate presence.

However, in many places, the supposed administration partners Lakas and Kampi slugged it out with each other and, according to Zubiri, fielding four candidates in one area.

Before the elections, we took pride in saying that 90 percent or 80 percent of the county had no opposition bets. Oo nga, no opposition bets pero apat naman yung administration bets na naglalaban laban so ganun din. Ang nangyari walang nangampanya para sa amin [Yes, there were no opposition bets but there were four administration bets fighting each other so the result was the same. What happened was no one campaigned for us], he pointed out.

Exasperated by the turn of events, Zubiri said Arroyo mentioned she would just pray and seek peace spiritually in Rome.

Arroyo also said she was confident she could still work with anyone in an opposition-dominated Senate, Zubiri added.

She was just exasperated about the whole situation. Sayang daw pero [She said it was a pity] you know, she wants to move forward. Sabi nya [She said] she can work with anyone in the Senate basta [as long as it is] for the good of the country, Zubiri said. (PIA Dispatch)

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