By Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos
Presidential daughter and Davao City Mayor Sara Z. Duterte (L) and Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go. (File photos)
MANILA (Philippines News Agency)– Other potential presidential candidates in the 2022 national elections do not stand a chance against Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte and Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo said on Saturday.
Panelo issued the statement, as he vouched anew for Sara and Go’s competence to lead the country once President Rodrigo Duterte steps down from office next year.
“Yung mga gustong tumakbong presidente, naku, wala kayong laban kayong Mayor Sara, kahit kay Senador Christopher ‘Bong’ Go (To those who are considering running for president, you do not stand a chance against Mayor Sara and Senator Christopher ‘Bong’ Go),” Panelo said during his commentary show Counterpoint.
On Friday, Sara said he is now “open” to the idea of seeking the presidency in 2022.
Sara’s latest statement came after she repeatedly rejected calls for her to run for presidency even if the pre-election surveys showed that she is the most preferred presidential candidate next year.
Go, on the other hand, was being pushed by Duterte’s ruling party, the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban), to join the 2022 presidential race.
On Monday, Go said he has no ambition to become president which he described as a “thankless job.”
Panelo said it would be “game over” in case Sara or Go decide to run and pick Duterte as running mate.
“Pag iyan ang tumakbo at bise presidente si Presidente Duterte, ah game over. Wala na iyan. Tapos na ho iyan. Maniwala kayo sa akin (If one of them decides to run and the vice president is President Duterte, it is game over. It is finished. Believe me),” he said.
Panelo added that Duterte expressed willingness to run for vice president, a move which would make others drop their plan to run for vice president.
“Payag na ho siyang tumakbong bise presidente. Kaya ‘yung mga nag-aambisyong mga bise eh, kayo rin, kung gusto niyong makatikim ng talo, eh di sumige kayo (He’s now willing to run for vice president. So, to those who have an ambition to be vice president, run if you want to lose),” he said.
The PDP-Laban on May 31 adopted a resolution urging Duterte to run for vice president.
Duterte on Monday said he is “seriously thinking” of accepting the calls for him to seek the vice presidency. (PNA)