The Pilipino Movement for Transformational Leadership (PMTL) shortlists its candidates

(This is a press release by PMTL, March 11, 2016. Blog Watch is releasing it verbatim. In no way should the shortlist be considered an endorsement by Blog Watch.)

The Pilipino Movement for Transformational Leadership (PMTL), announced today that it had already finalized its list of short-listed candidates for the positions of President, Vice-President and Senator for the coming May 2016 elections.

Leaders of different Christian groups during launch of PMTL
Leaders of different Christian groups during launch of PMTL

The PMTL was formally launched in mid-2015 through the coalition of the major Christian faith-based groups and organizations from the Catholic, Protestant and Evangelical communities.

Atty. Alex Lacson, lead convenor of the PMTL, said “PMTL was formed essentially to encourage the Christian faithful to participate in doing God’s work in the political field, by providing a mechanism that would enable our people to select and elect honest, competent, dedicated and God-centered servant leaders for our country”.

“The mechanism that PMTL adopted has two (2) components – the GabayKristo and the People’s Primary. The GabayKristo is the common criteria and voters’ guide that the PMTL member organizations have the decided to use to guide their membership and the voting public. The GabayKristo has a set of 20 specific questions that evaluate the candidates in four (4) areas – Character, Competence, Integrity in Leadership & Public Service, and Faithfulness to God, Country & People. It has a grading system that allows voters to rate a candidate from 1 up to 5, 1 being the lowest grade and 5 the highest. The candidate who garners the highest score is the most deserving to be voted.”

“The adoption of GabayKristo as a common voters’ guide is historic. This is the first time in our nation’s history that the biggest faith-based organizations from the Catholic, Protestant and Evangelical communities have decided to adopt and use only one voters’ guide for all our memberships nationwide”, says Bishop Reuben Abante, PMTL Co-Chairman and leader of BIBLEMODE, an evangelical network with more than 6,000 affiliate local churches nationwide.

The second component of PMTL’s mechanism is the People’s Primary, a nomination process where those PMTL member organizations which are allowed by their charters and are willing to participate, may recommend 2 persons for President, 2 for VP, and 8 for Senators, but must use the GabayKristo as the criteria. Thereafter, all the recommendees will be ranked and rated by the Nomination Committee. The top 3 for President, top 3 for VP, and top 15 for Senators will form and become the short-listed Candidates of PMTL.

The short-list of candidates will now be forwarded by PMTL to People’s Choice Movement, an entity that is separate and independent from PMTL. The People’s Choice Movement, on its own, may campaign for the short-listed Candidates as it is, or may ask the combined memberships of all PMTL member organizations to choose from among the short-listed Candidates whom they want for President, VP and Senators. But participation and voting in the People’s Primary is purely voluntary on the part of any person or member of any organization. In addition, when voting in the People’s Primary, no person should carry his membership in any organization.

GabayKristo, as a voters’ guide, is separate and independent from the People’s Primary. Groups and people may choose to support and use the GabayKristo only, and not participate in the People’s Primary.

PMTL, as an entity and coalition, is non-partisan and will only provide guidance to the voters in general on how to choose and elect honest, competent, dedicated and God-centered servant leaders for the country. PMTL will not endorse any candidate for any specific position.

“On the other hand, the People’s Choice Movement, whose membership is purely voluntary, will be the one that will handle the voting and selection in the People’s Primary, as well as promote and campaign for the winning candidates in the ways and manner they deem appropriate, ” Atty. Lacson explained.

“With the process of short-listing of the candidates finished, the PMTL convenors are now pleased to inform the public that the shortlisted candidates were drawn from a list of nominees submitted by the faith-based groups and organizations from the Catholic, Protestant and Evangelical communities comprising the PMTL,” declared Roy Calleja, Co-Chairman of PMTL and Chairman of the Brotherhood of Christian Businessmen and Professionals (BCBP).

The PMTL Shortlisted GABAYKRISTO candidates are as follows:

A. For President

1. Poe, Grace
2. Roxas, Mar

B. For Vice-President
1. Paredes, Jesus Zosimo
2. Robredo, Maria Leonor

C. For Senator
1. Alunan, Rafael III
2. Belgica, Greco
3. Bello, Walden
4. Colmenares, Neri
5. De Lima, Leila
6. Gordon, Richard
7. Guingona, Teofisto III
8. Liban, Dante
9. Lopez, Emmanuel
10. Ople, Maria Susana
11. Osmena, Sergio III
12. Pagdilao, Samuel Jr.
13. Pangilinan, Francis
14. Romulo, Roman
15. Villanueva, Joel

Calleja said that the PMTL convenors have submitted to The People’s Choice organization to execute the next step of the People’s Primary Process, where the short-listed candidates for Vice-President and Senators, would be voted upon by the individual members of the faith-based organizations until March 15, 2016.

Bishop Abante explained that the PMTL convenors decided not to include the short-listed candidates for President in The People’s Choice, because of legal issues involving one of the short-listed candidates which the convenors felt could not be resolved with finality by the end of the voting period on March 15, 2016.

The candidates (for Vice-President and top 8 senators) who garner the most number of votes in the People’s Primary will be declared as the People’s Choice Candidates and will be supported by the People’s Choice Movement volunteers all over the country.

The results of the People’s Primary are expected to be released by The People’s Choice organization by the third week of March.

The PMTL has earned the commendation of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) during its 111th Plenary Assembly in Cebu last January 22-24, 2016.

“With the commendation by the CBCP, many dioceses around the country are now inviting PMTL to conduct voters’ education seminar based on the GabayKristo,” said Mars Catan, a leader of the Elim Community, who is heading the PMTL GabayKristo Voters’ Education campaign nationwide.

Catan and his group also launched the GabayKristo official song entitled “Gabay” at Edsa Shrine Chapel on February 25th, during the Forum on Good Governance organized by BCBP.

Many non-faith based groups and organizations have also expressed interest in the PMTL’s GabayKristo and the People’s Primary as PMTL is now receiving many invitations from various groups, organizations, schools, among others.

Radio Veritas, a Catholic media channel, has offered to air for free the GabayKristo up to Election Day. Radio DZAS and FEBC (Far East Broadcasting Corporation), the primary media arm of the evangelical and protestant churches and organizations in the country, have also offered free spots and are already running 5 different versions of GabayKristo info spots daily.

To protect the integrity of the coalition, all PMTL convenors made a covenant among themselves that no one among them shall be running for any public office, national or local, said Bishop Abante.

Lacson meanwhile said that our country badly needs servant leaders. But to be able to elect servant leaders, the good Christians and good Filipinos must unite to build a mechanism that can match if not defeat the mechanism of the traditional politicians.



Photo by Jane Uymatiao. Some rights reserved.