A picture of a campaign team member with a 2022 presidential aspirant taken before a debate gained the online community’s attention after a statement shirt was spotted.
The accounts of the “Kabataan Para Kay Leody” shared a photo of an individual from the presidential candidate Leody de Guzman‘s campaign team with another aspirant, Ferdinand Marcos Jr.
The campaign team member opened his jacket to reveal a statement shirt beneath, which reads “Never Again.”
Marcos Jr. was among those who attended the presidential debate hosted by SMNI, a media network run by church founder Apollo Quiboloy. at Okada Manila, Pasay City on February 15.
Apart from him and De Guzman, former presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella and former defense chief Norberto Gonzales were also present.
Those who skipped the debate were Vice President Leni Robredo, Sens. Manny Pacquiao and Ping Lacson and Manila Mayor Isko Moreno.
Presidential hopefuls entrepreneur Faisal Mangondato and cardiologist Jose Montemayor Jr. did not attend as well. The former revealed that he was not invited.
Meanwhile, the screengrab of Marcos Jr’s picture with a campaign team member made its way to r/Philippines, a subreddit on the discussion website dedicated to all things about the country.
“Choose violence,” the Reddit user who shared it wrote as a caption.
It has reached over 1,100 upvotes and seven Reddit awards from users.
In the comments section of its Facebook post, the account of “Kabataan Para Kay Leody” wrote that the statement shirt pertains to Martial Law.
“Never Again to Martial Law,” it said.
“Never again” is a battle cry that has been uttered by those who opposed Marcos Jr’s electoral bids since 2015, when he announced his candidacy for vice president.
Apart from opposing his bid, critics also use the statement to remember Ferdinand Marcos Sr’s implementation of Martial Law and their stand against it.
Marcos Sr. placed the country under martial rule for 14 years to supposedly quell the communist insurgency and restore order.
The period was marked by curtailment of civil liberties, extrajudicial killings and unsolved disappearances, media oppression and economic recession, among others.
Marcos Jr. previously said that he can only apologize for what he has done, in response to Martial Law abuses.
“That makes perfect sense. You cannot apologize for what somebody else has done,” he said in October 2021.
“No matter what apologies you give, it won’t be enough. It’s not been enough because political forces opposing my father, his government fell. They won,” Marcos Jr. added.