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The nephew of Cardinal Sin backs Marcos Jr.’s plea for unity.

AKLAN, KALIBO β€” Have you ever wondered what the letter L in Jaime L. Cardinal Sin’s name stands for?

Now you don’t have to wonder any longer. It’s an abbreviation for Lachica.

Despite Cardinal Sin’s pivotal role in the 1986 People Power movement that ended former President Ferdinand Marcos’ two-decade dictatorship, his nephew, former Kalibo Mayor William Lachica, believes that the bitter lessons of history have taught the Filipino people that the only way to rise above mediocrity is to unite behind a common goal.

Lachica, a maverick politician vying to become Aklan’s next governor, is a staunch supporter of Marcos’ son, presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., and says that if his uncle Jaime Lachica Cardinal Sin were still alive today, he would have favored unity over division.

“Kung buhay si Cardinal Sin, ‘yun din ang kaniyang magiging intensyon, na magkaisa ang mga tao at kalimutan na ang pagkakawatak-watak dahil sa pulitika,” says the narrator. Napakahaba ng mahigit tatlumpong taon at nakita naman nating halos walang nangyari sa bayan natin (If Cardinal Sin is still alive, that will also be his aim, for the people to unify and forget about political divisions.) “It’s been more than 30 years, and almost nothing has changed in our country”), he remarked in an interview.

Lachica was in his early twenties when the so-called EDSA uprising occurred, and while the political turmoil disrupted his family’s rather low-key existence, he would soon find himself enmeshed in politics, thanks to his new-found celebrity, which was brought to him unwittingly by his famous uncle.

“Hanggang maging mayor at ngayon nga ay tumatakbo bilang gobernador, nagsimula ako bilang konsehal.” Malaking bagay din ang pagiging kamag-anak ko sa kaniya sa palagay ko, pero kung hindi din naman ako nagsikap na maglingkod ng maayos eh hindi din naman siguro ako ihahalal ng mga kababayan ko (I started as I think it’s important that I’m connected to him, but if I don’t attempt to serve properly, my constituents may not elect me as well),” he remarked.

When asked why he joined Marcos’ Partido Federal ng Pilipinas (PFP), Lachica said he and his family began to compare what had happened in the past to what was happening now, and gradually realized the folly of the political elite’s power grab as the country deteriorated due to failed leadership and unbridled bureaucratic shenanigans.

“Iba talaga sa panahon nung matandang Marcos,” says the narrator. Ang pag-unlad na malayong malayo sa nangyayari ngayon, nakikita mo. It was different at the time of old Marcos because nung pumasok ako sa pulitika, marami akong kinopya sa kaniyang pamamalakad dito sa aming probinsya (It was different during the time of old Marcos because nung pumasok ako sa pulitika, marami akong kinopya sa kaniyang pa You see progress that is vastly different from what is already occurring. That’s why, when I first entered politics, I took a lot of inspiration from his leadership in our province),” he explained.

According to Lachica, whose grandfather is Cardinal Sin’s mother’s brother, their family was initially divided over the prelate’s role in the ouster of the older Marcos, but after some time they came to the conclusion that Bongbong’s father was the best, if not the greatest, president the Philippines has ever had.

“Ipagpapatuloy ni Bongbong ang mga nasimulan ng kaniyang ama, naniniwala akong ipagpapatuloy ni Bongbong ang mga nasimulan ng kaniyang ama, naniniwala akong ipagpapatuloy In my family, I believe Bongbong will continue what his father started with nagpapakumbaba and umiiwas sa mapanira and mapagwatak-watak na pulitika (I believe Bongbong will continue what his father did with nagpapakumbaba and umiiwas sa mapanira and mapagwatak-watak na pulitika). For our family, it’s critical that we see him modest and avoid divisive politics),” he explained.

When asked if Cardinal Sin made the right decision in backing with Marcos’ opponents in 1986, Lachica responded only time will tell whether or not he did.

“But ang tingin ko tanging ang kaniyang anak lamang, si Bongbong, ang makakapag-ahon sa atin sa mga problema nating kinakaharap,” she says. Kaya’t naniniwala kami sa kaniyang panawagan ng pagkakaisa upang matupad ang kaniyang mga pangarap para sa bansa (But for the time being, I believe that only his son, Bongbong, can help us overcome our issues.) As a result, we support his call for unity in order to achieve his goals for the country),” he stated.

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