Duterte-Duterte in 2022 would be 'height of political dynasty' — Carpio

Duterte-Duterte in 2022 would be 'height of political dynasty' � Carpio
Conveners of 1Sambayan, a coalition looking to endorse a unified slate of opposition candidates for 2022, hold a hybrid media event on March 18, 2021.
Screen grab 1Sambayan Youtube page

MANILA, Philippines — The convenor of an opposition coalition on Wednesday deplored the possibility of a Duterte-Duterte ticket in the 2022 elections as the "height of political dynasty," as he urged Filipinos to prevent it from happening.

With the next polls set 14 months from now, there have been calls from groups for Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte to run to succeed her father, President Rodrigo Duterte, as chief executive.

Some members of the ruling PDP-Laban party are also circulating a party resolution urging President Dutetre to run for vice president, saying the country needs more of his leadership. Sen. Manny Pacquiao, acting president of the party and who is rumored to also be eyeing a presidential run, has disavowed the resolutions, saying PDP-Laban should focus on helping people during the COVID-19 pandemic.

On ANC's "Headstart," 1Sambayan lead convenor and ex-Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said there is a need to take a strong position on the possibility of a Duterte-Duterte tandem.

"A president annointing his own daughter as his successor, I think that's the height of political dynasty," he said. "The Constitution says political dynasties shall be restricted in accordance with the law...but the only problem is Congress has failed to enact the law."

Political dynasties have long been a feature of Philippine politics but has yet to manifest at the presidential and vice-presidential races.

Three out of four of the president's children are in elected posts Davao City: Sara as mayor, Sebastian "Baste" as vice mayor, and Paolo as district representative.

The president has repeatedly publicly discouraged Mayor Duterte from eyeing the presidency in several of his speeches. But many have pointed out that the president had also rejected calls for him to run in 2016, only to change his mind and run as a substitute candidate for PDP-Laban. 

On 'authoritarian' claim, Pacquiao's possible run

Carpio also reacted to a comment by Mayor Duterte that the coalition was being "authoritarian" by rejecting potential candidates who have different positions on issues.

"We have made our position clear that we are against extrajudicial killings, against violation of human rights, against political dynasties," Carpio said. "We have a lot of Filipinos who are capable of running this country without the baggage of EJKs and violation of human rights."

Asked why the 1Sambayan will not consider Sen. Pacquiao, whom Carpio said is "practically campaigning already," the former Supreme Court justice said the country cannot afford to have a leader who, based on past performance, is often absent.

"One of the criteria that we have [is] we will choose a leader who is competent," he said. "As congressman, Pacquiao was the Number 1 absentee. He was the topnotcher in absences in Congress. As senator, he again topped. So that basic qualification of competence is not there."

Carpio added that while Pacquiao has a "good heart," what the country will need is a president who can lead Filipinos to bounce back from the economic and social impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement, Pacquiao said he missed sessions because he needed to visit his constituents. The House holds sessions Mondays to Wednesdays. The Senate holds them Mondays to Thursdays.

Pacquiao has maintained a professional boxing career even while serving as a member of Congress. 

'Include workers, masses in coalition'

The 1Sambayan coalition, which was launched last week, has floated names it might support as standard-bearers. These were Vice President Leni Robredo, Sens. Grace Poe and Nancy Binay as well as Manila Mayor Isko Moreno.

But as the coalition tries to build an effective opposition, a youth group challenged it to make pressing matters the center of their campaign, not merely on the identity of the candidates.

"The emergence of the 1Sambayan initiative against the regime for the 2022 elections is a positive indication that Filipinos are already tired from this government and wanting change," the Samahan ng Progresibong Kabataan said in Filipino in a March 23 statement. "But if their intentions are pure, where is the ordinary man in their narrative?"

"We challenge 1Sambayan to put forward the fight of workers and the masses. If they are sincere in ending the crisis in economy and health, they should understand that it is won by uniting people and not in the hands of traditional politicians." — Christian Deiparine with a report from Xave Gregorio

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