Veloso’s plea to Binay: Save my life, my children need me
As the date of her execution draws near, Mary Jane Veloso, the Filipino domestic helper who is in the Indonesian death row for drug smuggling, appealed to Vice President Jejomar Binay to save her from being executed saying that her two sons need her.
In a handwritten letter obtained by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Saturday when they visited the Filipina domestic helper in Nusa Kambangan Island, Veloso reiterated her innocence and said that she was only a victim.
“Ako po si Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso, lubus po akong humihingi ng tulong sa into, iligtas po ninyo ang aking buhay sa hatol na kamatayan, mayroon po akong dalawang anak na maliliit pa at nangangailangan ng inang mag-aaruga, magpapatnubay sa kanila at nangngailangan nang pagmamahal nang isang ina,” Veloso’s letter to Binay read.
(I am Mary Jane Veloso, sincerely asking for your help to save my life from death sentence. I have two small children who need their mother to take care for them, guide them… they need the love of a mother.)
“Vice President Binay, kayo lang po ang makakatulong sa akin, hawak niyo po at nang ating Pangulo ng Pilipinas Ninoy [sic] Aquino ang aking kaligtasan. Vice President Binay, wala po akong kasalanan, isa lang po akong biktima, hinding-hindi ko po magagawang magtrabaho nang masama lalong-lalo na ang magdala at magbenta ng droga sa ibang bansa na hindi ko kilala at isang beses ko palang na napupuntahan,” Veloso said.
(Vice President Binay, you are the only one who can help me, my salvation is in your and President Aquino’s hands. Vice President Binay, I did not do any wrong, I am just a victim. I cannot do a job that’s not right especially to deliver and sell drugs to another country which I have visited only once.)
She said that if ever given the chance, she would have wanted to work as a domestic helper to support her family.
“Kahit na po mahirap lang ang buhay namin, hinding-hindi ko po magagawa ang ibinibintang nila sa akin. Mas gugustuhin ko pang magtrabaho bilang katulong kahit na mahirap at pagod pero malinis na paraan, pinalaki din po ako ng aking mga magulang na may takot sa Panginoong Diyos. Sumusumpa po ako sa harap nang Panginoong Diyos na wala po akong kasalanan at isa lamang po akong biktima ng mga taong gumagawa nang kasamaan,” her letter read.
(Even though we are poor, I cannot ever do what they’re accusing me of. I would rather work as a domestic helper even if it’s hard and tiring, at least it’s done in a good way. My parents raised me to be God-fearing. I swear in the name of God that I did not do anything wrong and that I am just a victim of those who are doing bad things.)
She also thanked the Aquino government for helping her to appeal her case.
“Vice President Binay, naniniwala po ako na hindi niyo po ako papabayaan, maraming salamat po sa lahat nang tulong na ipinagkaloob niyo po sa akin at nagpapasalamat din po ako kay Pangulong Pilipinas Ninoy [sic] Aquino bilang ama nang ating bansa. Alam ko po na hindi tumutigil ang ating Pangulo sa pagtulong at paghanap nang paraan para matulungan po ako at hindi matuloy ang hatol ng kamatayan sa akin,” she said.
(Vice President Binay, I believe that you will not neglect me. Thank you very much for all the help that you have extended to me and I also thank President Aquino who is the father of our country. I know that the President doesn’t stop in finding ways to help me so that my execution will not push through.)
In a statement on Sunday, Binay called on fellow Filipinos to not lose hope for Veloso to be saved from execution.
“Let us not lose hope. We will continue to use all the avenues available to us. We have a second appeal for a judicial review and we have the personal appeals sent by President Aquino and myself to President Widodo and my appeal to Vice President Jusuf Kalla. Let us continue to pray for Mary Jane,” Binay said.
Binay went to Indonesia last Wednesday for the Asia-African Summit where he also met with his Indonesian counterpart, Vice President Jusuf Kalla for the commutation of Veloso’s death sentence.
While in Indonesia, Binay also met with some of Veloso’s relatives.
The DFA said on Friday that they have filed a second appeal for a judicial review on her case, emphasizing that Veloso was a victim of human trafficking.
According to Veloso’s mother, her date of execution is set on April 28.
The 30-year-old mother of two was arrested in Yogyakarta Airport in 2010 when authorities discovered 2.6 kilograms of heroin stitched to the linings of her luggage.
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