Tingting: Why would I sabotage peace deal?
But Tingting believes sultanate has right over Sabah
PAMPANGA – United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) senatorial candidate Margarita "Tingting" Cojuangco vehemently denied she was sabotaging the peace initiatives of the Aquino administration with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).
Cojuangco said there is no way she would do such a thing.
"Gusto nila mag-away kami ni Noynoy, but there is no source, name it…they can never make our family fight.”
She added that she won’t dignify the issue since no one from Malacanang has surfaced to make such a claim.
"It’s an imagination of someone who just called up the newspapers," Cojuangco said.
Quoting unidentified sources, The Philippine Star reported the presence of armed Filipinos in Sabah was meant to sabotage the Aquino administration's peace efforts and was allegedly instigated by Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) chieftain Nur Misuari, former national security adviser Norberto Gonzales, and the President's uncle, former Tarlac congressman Jose "Peping" Cojuangco and Tingting herself.
Her involvement on the issue supposedly stems from her long-standing friendship with Misuari, which she did not deny.
The newspaper reports quoted highly-placed sources in Malacañang who supposedly believe Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III is not acting on his own in highlighting his family's claim over Sabah.
Kiram, the newspaper sources noted, is ailing and is undergoing dialysis.
Up to 300 followers of Kiram are holed up in Lahad Datu, Sabah and surrounded by Malaysian forces.
Kiram has said his followers will not leave because "Sabah is our home."
Cojuangco, who has a Master's Degree in National Security and has been active on peace efforts in Mindanao, believes Kiram has the right to claim the territory based on historical accounts.
"It’s really theirs, there was a peace accord in the 1960s, and what happened is a signal that they have not been listened to for a long, long time," she said.
Cojuangco believes the Sultanate of Sulu has reached its point of exasperation, and she hopes the President will support Kiram in his fight for his territorial claim.