Imee Marcos wants Igorot ritual before using Trillanes' Senate office

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 25) — Senator-elect Imee Marcos will occupy the office of opposition lawmaker Antonio Trillanes, and she has plans for it before moving in.

Marcos said she wants to hold an Igorot ritual to have the office "blessed" and ward off evil spirits. The Igorots are an indigenous group in Northern Luzon.

"Siguro magpapatawag ako ng Igorot namin dahil kailangan basbasan office ko (Maybe I will call for Igorots to bless my office)," Marcos told reporters as she attended an orientation for the first-time senators.

"Kung papayag si Senator Trillanes, sabihin ko kay Sonny e makikisayaw kami sa Igorot namin para mabendisyunan nang todo," she added.

[Translation: If Senator Trillanes will agree, I'll tell him that we should dance with the Igorots for the full effect of the blessing.]

This was similar to the advice given to her by her ally, fellow neophyte Senator Bong Go.

"Galit na galit nga si Senator Imee dahil yun ang kwarto natitira sa kanya. Sabi ko wala ka na magagawa, ikaw huling bumunot. Gawin mo nalang tumawag ka ng pari, pabendisyunan mo opisina baka, mahirap na masapian ka pa ng masamang espirtu," Go said.

[Translation: Senator Imee was so mad because that was the room left to her. I said she could no longer do anything about it because she was the last to pick. Just call a priest for an office blessing for you might be possessed by evil spirits.]

Trillanes is a staunch critic of President Rodrigo Duterte. Marcos and Go are the President's allies.

In a statement, Trillanes said, "If the religious ritual is meant to help her fulfill her mandate as a newly elected Senator, then that's a good thing."

"But if she's saying it to insinuate na masama akong tao (that I am a bad man), then sobrang ka impokritohan naman yun (that's too much of a hypocrisy), even for a Marcos," he added.

Last year, Trillanes holed up in his Senate office for weeks amid threats of arrest when Duterte invalidated the amnesty granted to him by the previous administration.