PEP EXCLUSIVE. Former Senator Migz Zubiri happy to be away from political intrigues

Former senator Juan Miguel Zubiri is happy where he is now as vice chairman of the Philippine National Red Cross: “Kasi noon ’pag tumutulong kami, sasabihin nila, ‘A, boto lang habol niyan.’ Ngayon na tumutulong kami na civilian, mas natutuwa po kami kasi yung pasasalamat nila sa amin is sincere and genuine.”


Masaya ngayon sa buhay-sibilyan niya ang dating senador na si Juan Miguel "Migz" Zubiri.

At ngayon, isa sa pinakaaabangan niya ay ang pagsilang ng asawang nitong si Audrey Tan sa ikatlo nilang anak.

Masayang ibinahagi nito ang balita sa eksklusibong panayam sa kanya ng PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) sa launch ng Liv Superclub sa Mandaue City, Cebu, noong Biyernes ng gabi, May 16.

Bahagi niya, “Actually masaya, sobrang saya ng pamilya ko.

"Siyempre mas masaya po tayo kasi wala na po tayo sa intriga.

“We’re not in the political limelight so much, so nabuntis si Misis sa baby number three.

“You’re the first to know, we’re having our third baby—it’s a boy!

"And my wife will give birth on August 28.

"There, that’s our due date.

“So, very happy and it’s a welcome change after after fifteen years in politics.

"Back to civilian life ako kaya masaya.”

BACK TO BUSINESS. Isa pa sa kanyang pinagkakaabalahan ay ang kanyang negosyo.

Kuwento ni Migz, “Medyo negosyante, iba yung stress ng negosyo, e.

“Yung pambayad ng kuryente, suweldo ng mga empleyado.

"At least that’s a better stress than political stress like what my colleages are experiencing now.

"Their stress levels are all so high.”

Isa sa mga naging topic ng panayam kay Migz ay ang tatlong "Napolist" na siyang nagdadawit sa pangalang ng ilang senador sa Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) scam sa pangunguna diumano ng negosyanteng si Janet Lim-Napoles.

Pumutok ang balitang ito sa loob lamang ng dalawang buwan matapos ang 2013 senatorial elections.

Read: Panfilo Lacson bares "Napolist"; Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago lambasts Lacson for including her in pork barrel scam



NAPOLIST. Sinubukan hingan ng PEP ng pahayag si Migz kung ano ang masasabi niya tungkol sa pagkakadawit ng mga senador sa PDAF scam.

Nais daw ng dating senador na mabigyang linaw na ang isyung ito at maparusahan ang dapat maparusahan.

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Pahayag niya, “Well, first of all, I always say that no one is above the law.

“If someone commits a crime, whether it’s a high-ranking official or lowly clerk, they must be treated the same.

“So, by saying that, even though it’s a senator may nagawang masama at illegal, dapat maparusahan.

"Ngayon, dapat ma-substantiate, kailangan may ebidensiya lang, yun lang."

Umaasa rin si Migz na patas ang magiging desisyon ng korte kung sino ang mga dapat maparusahan.

Aniya, “Sana patas, hindi yung napipili lang ng political color or may flavor of the month.

"Kung sino talaga nagkasala ay isama na nila lahat.

“Huwag naman yung pipili na lang kung sinu-sino.

“I’m sure my colleagues are quite intelligent, many of them are lawyers in defense.

“I’m sure they can answer whatever accusations are thrown at them.”

Dagdag pa niya, “Ang importate lang e kung nagkasala sila at mapatunayan na may ebidensiya na nagsala sila, no one is above the law.

"Whether it’s senator or president or a councilor or a mayor, kailangan maparusahan.”

IN THE CLEAR. Nakasisiguro raw si Migz na hindi siya madadawit sa PDAF scam dahil isang NGO lang ang kanyang tinulungan at maayos niyang natuos at na-liquidate ang kanyang pork barrel.

Paliwanag niya, “In my case, talagang yung PDAF [ko] was always accounted for.

“Classrooms kasi yun, e, classrooms and daycare center, then talaga dina-download ko sa LGU [Local Government Units].

"So, ang LGU yung gumagawa.”

Ang nag-iisang non-government unit naman daw na tinulungan ng dating senador ay ang Nagkakaisang Manggagawa ng Pelikulang Pilipino (NMPP) sa pamumuno ng direktor na si Joel Lamangan.

Ani Migz, “Ang tinulungan kasi namin doon yung mga behind the scenes ng movie industry, hindi yung mga directors.

"Kasi yung MOWELFUND, directors ’yan, mga producers, actors and all that.

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“So this NMPP helps the seasonal workers of the movie industry.

“So yun, dun lang ako nakatulong na NGO, and I’m proud of that, kasi yun talaga.

"Hindi naman maku-question yung credibility ni Joel Lamangan, right?

“I mean, my God, if there’s anyone who loves the country more than Jose Rizal, it’s Joel Lamangan.

"And of course the other directors are there.

“So, I’m proud to say na hindi tayo kasama sa mga sangkot na ’yan sa Napolist.

"And I’m happy that people recognize that now."

Diin pa niya, "And I’m happy that people are slowly realizing na meron din mga senator din na gumawa ng mga batas, na nakagawa ng mabuting proyekto.

“Kasama doon si Senator [Dick] Gordon.

“I mean, ‘yan ang frustration namin, e, people like Senator Gordon who truly deserve to be in the Senate but weren’t able to make it.

“With all these things coming up, nakikita naman nila na there are still a few good men, and I hope people choose wisely in the next elections.”

MARIAN DEVOTEE. Itinuturing din ni former Senator Zubiri na suwerte ang kanyang pagkakatalo sa 2013 senatorial elections dahil na rin nakaiwas siya sa stress na dinadanas ng mga senador ngayon.

Kuwento niya, “Actually, God is good all the time.

"And sa totoo lang, right before the Monday elections, Friday night I was in Manaoag [Pangasinan].

"I’m a devotee of Our lady of Manaoag, I’m a Marian devotee.

"I prayed really hard.

"Nine ng gabi yun and sarado na yung church, pero yung pari doon, the parish priest knows na I’m a Marian devotee.

“So, humabol siya sa akin, kasi paalis na kami noong nalaman kong sarado na yung church.

"He said, ‘No, no, no. Migz, you pray, you ask Her for direction and for guidance.’

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“So I went in the church and I prayed, our Lord God and Mama Mary, I ask them for direction.

“I said, ‘If you want me to win on Monday and be a senator, you’ll make me win there’s no doubt about it.

’"But if you don’t want me to win because you have another direction for me, so be it.

“So, noong natalo ako noong 2013 election, hindi na ako nagalit pa, nagsabi na dinaya ako. Tahimik lang ako noon, ’di ba?

“Tumahimik ako, I didn’t do anything, I accepted my faith.

"That was what I asked the Lord to give me at that time, to show me what he wants to do for me, what my plan is for my life.

"So, wala pang two months, lumabas yung pork barrel scam, nagkagulo-gulo sa Senado.”

Ipinagpapasalamat ni Zubiri na hindi siya nadawit sa isyung ito, lalo pa’t nagiging magulo na ang estado ng Senado ngayon.

Sabi niya, “Ngayon grabe yung bangayan—the senators are killing each other and the senators are hating each other.

“There’s no more cohesiveness in the Senate, there’s no unity.

“Masama na yung tingin ng mga tao sa Senado na talagang minumura na ang senador.”

FAMILY MAN. Samantala, tinanong na rin ng PEP kung may balak ba siyang tumakbo muli sa 2016 national elections.

Sagot ng dating senador, “I have no plans, parang this is not in line with my plans at this point in time.

“Happy na ako bilang civilian, doing my own little thing.

“Vice chairman ako ng Red Cross, chairman doon si Gordon.

“So, tumutulong pa rin kami kahit paano, but in a civilian capacity na wala nang hadlang, walang political intrigue.

“Kasi noon, ’pag tumutulong kami, sasabihin nila, ‘A, boto lang habol niyan.’

“Ngayon na tumutulong kami na civilian, mas natutuwa po kami kasi yung pasasalamat nila sa amin is sincere and genuine.”

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Hindi naman daw niya isinasara ang kanyang pintuan sa posibilidad na tumakbo muli.

Aniya, “I’m not saying no, I’m not saying never, but right now, I’m happy being a family man.”


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