PDP-Laban faction backs Sara for VP, leaves out running mate Bongbong

Xave Gregorio - Philstar.com
PDP-Laban faction backs Sara for VP, leaves out running mate Bongbong
Davao Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio said Duterte-Carpio would not qualify in their group, which rejects those who are identified with authoritarianism.
STAR / File

MANILA, Philippines — (Updated 5:26 p.m.) A faction of administration party PDP-Laban announced Friday that it has adopted Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio as its vice presidential candidate for the upcoming elections, but opted not to back any presidential bet as it said it is still evaluating contenders for Malacañang.

In a statement, the PDP-Laban faction led by Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said that the party's national executive committee picked Duterte-Carpio "based on her credentials, advocacies and vision for our nation."

"The PDP-Laban believes that the quality of her leadership and her track record in the performance of her duties in her current office make her most qualified for the position she is now aspiring for and therefore deserves the party’s support," the party said.

It added that Duterte-Carpio's election as vice president will help ensure the continuity of the programs of the administration of her father, President Rodrigo Duterte.

It also said that it is finalizing an alliance agreement with Duterte-Carpio's party, Lakas-CMD. Cusi said among the details being ironed out is dealing with local candidates from PDP-Laban and Lakas-CMD vying for the same posts.

Lakas-CMD thanked PDP-Laban for endorsing Duterte-Carpio, calling it an opportunity to renew its partnership with the administration party.

“Lakas-CMD is always open to alliances and partnerships with other parties and political groups which share our ideals and vision for the common good of the country,” the party said in a statement.

Bongbong left out

While it adopted Duterte-Carpio, the PDP-Laban Cusi wing did not adopt her running mate, former Sen. Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. as Cusi said they "still have to be convinced."

Cusi said they are still looking at all presidential candidates to see who among them would best continue the programs of the Duterte administration.

He added that Duterte's personal pick for president will also be considered in their deciding who to back for the presidency.

He said, however, that it is also possible for PDP-Laban to end up not endorsing or adopting any presidential bet.

Marcos’ spokesperson, Vic Rodriguez, called PDP-Laban’s adoption of Duterte-Carpio as a “unilateral” move as the Davao City mayor supposedly told them that her parties have not forged an agreement with the administration party.

The other faction of PDP-Laban led by Sen. Manny Pacquiao, meanwhile, dismissed the Cusi wing’s move as a “desperation to hold to power.”

“Mayor Duterte has rejected them many times and has even made pronouncements throwing insults to the party which used to be chaired by her father President Duterte,” said Lutgardo Barbo, vice chairman of the Pacquiao wing of PDP-Laban.

Duterte-Carpio said in November that she sought an alliance with PDP-Laban for it to back her and Marcos, but the party allegedly rejected this.

This was when PDP-Laban was fielding Sen. Christopher "Bong" Go for president through an allied party. Go eventually dropped out from the race, leaving the PDP-Laban Cusi wing without a standard bearer.

President Duterte, who chairs PDP-Laban, has previously called Marcos a "weak leader" and nixed an alliance with the parties backing him.

PDP-Laban was formed as a merger of parties Partido Demokratiko Pilipino and Lakas ng Bayan to oppose the dictatorial rule of Marcos' father, Ferdinand.




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