Hidilyn Diaz wishes other PH athletes won't be tagged in 'ouster plots'

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 27) – Olympic champion Hidilyn Diaz said she hopes other Filipino athletes will not experience her ordeal when she was included in a so-called matrix to oust President Rodrigo Duterte in 2019.

"Whatever happens, sana hindi mangyari 'yun sa ibang atleta at sana lahat tayo matuto, (Whatever happens, I hope this will not happen to other athletes and all of us can learn from this)," Diaz told CNN Philippines' The Final Word on Tuesday, a day after winning the country's first Olympic gold medal.

RELATED: Weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz bags PH's first Olympic gold medal in 97 years

Diaz added that she prefers to stay away from political issues. "As an athlete, ayaw kong maging (I don't want to be) political and I have to focus on the things that I need to do," she said.

The Zamboanga native was included in the "Oust Duterte" matrix in 2019. Diaz, who was preparing for the Olympics then, feared for her life after being linked to an alleged conspiracy to oust Duterte. 

"Sobrang focused ako sa goal ko for Tokyo 2020 and sana po wag po kayong ganon na idadawit niyo ang pangalan ng isang tao na sobrang busy at sobrang sinasakripisyo ang lahat para sa Pilipinas, ginagawa ang lahat para irepresenta ang Pilipinas sa weightlifting, sa Philippine sports and suddenly ilalagay lang ang pangalan sa isang matrix na walang basehan," Diaz said.

[Translation: I was so focused on my goal for Tokyo 2020. Please do not drag the name of someone who's so busy sacrificing everything for the country, doing everything to represent the Philippines in weightlifting, in Philippine sports, and you suddenly put her name in a baseless matrix.]

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque earlier said Malacañang does not need to apologize for the Olympic gold medalist's inclusion in the matrix, first revealed by Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo in 2019.