THE country’s chief executive bared a shortlist of names that he thinks are qualified to run for the highest position in the land.
In an apparent twist, President Rodrigo Duterte included the name of Presidential Daughter and incumbent Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte in the list, together with his longtime aide and now Senator Bong Go, Senator Manny Pacquiao, Manila City Mayor Franciso “Isko Moreno” Domagoso, and ex-senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr.
“Noong kinausap ko siya diyan, wala pa siyang desisyon, mayroon lang siya talagang mga options na sinabi,” said presidential spokesperson Harry Roque when asked who Duterte wants to succeed him as his term ends on June 30 next year.
Roque, however, clarified that the shortlist doesn’t include the presidential daughter when he last had a conversation with the older Duterte.
“Ang rekomendasyon niya ay ‘wag tumakbo. That’s the latest I heard from the President’s own mouth,” added Roque, as he tried to keep himself away from being compromised, just in case.
The Palace mouthpiece said that Duterte remains focused on addressing the continuing pandemic scare and the efforts to vaccinate a majority of the population for the country to be able to achieve herd immunity against the deadly virus.
“Ang importante naman ay mabakunahan ang pinakamarami nating mga kababayan, nang sa ganoon ay magkaroon tayo ng eleksyon kung saan ay ‘yung mga tao at mga kandidato ay magkakaroon ng pagkakataon ng magkakaroon ng panayam at makaboto ng pinakamabuting mga kandidato,” he quipped as he shied away from the political topic.
The ruling PDP-Laban political party earlier adopted resolutions pressing Duterte to run for Vice President and pick the party’s standard bearer of his choice in time for the 2022 general elections.