DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/12 August) – As newly proclaimed Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III was being sworn into office Friday morning in Mati City, Davao Oriental, his former rival, resigned senator Juan Miguel Zubiri told MindaNews he will run again for the same post in 2013.
Zubiri, who was in the city to meet with fellow alumni in the University of the Philippines-Los Banos Alumni Association Davao City Chapter, said is running to see if the people still trust him.
“For me, if I will win, it will be the best vindication,” he said in an interview.
Zubiri, a BS Agribusiness Management graduate of UPLB in 1990, stepped down last week over allegations he benefited from cheating in the 2007 elections.
He boasted that the laws he authored and co-authored as congressman and later as senator can speak for his accomplishments as public servant.
His profile page at the Senate’s website says that Zubiri is the principal author and sponsor of more than 20 major laws, both in the Senate and in the House of Representatives.
On the other hand, Zubiri congratulated Pimentel and expressed his support to the new senator.
“My congratulations to Senator Pimentel, my prayers, and if he needs my support, I’m just here. We need more Mindanao voices in the Senate,” he said.
Meanwhile, the resigned senator also disclosed that he is going around in selected areas of Mindanao to monitor some projects that he had implemented.
“I’m just going around to thank the people who supported me when I was still a senator. And I will also monitor the projects I have implemented and eventually for proper turnover to the concerned agency,” said Zubiri.
‘Life after Senate’
He also said that “there is life after Senate”, adding that he will continue his advocacy work for the environment.
After a month’s break or by October, Zubiri said, he will launch a watchdog called “Eco-Warriors for the Environment”.
“It will be the eyes and ears for the environment that will primarily monitor illegal logging and illegal mining activities,” he said.
Aside from environmental advocacy, Zubiri will also go around the country to seek support for the cooperatives since he also authored Republic Act 9520 or the Philippine Cooperative Code of 2008.
After meeting with the UPLB Alumni Association, Zubiri met with Pastor Apollo Quiboloy, a preacher known for endorsing candidates for national positions.
“I would like to thank Mayor Sara Duterte for all the support as well as his father for the kind words when I resigned from the Senate,” he concluded. (Keith Bacongco/MindaNews)