By Vanne Elaine Terrazola
Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III said President Duterte has already endorsed his candidacy for the May 13, 2019 midterm elections.
Pimentel on Tuesday sent reporters a photo of him with the President raising his hand, and with both of them doing the signature fist bump of the Partido Demokratiko ng Pilipinas-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).
“Hindi pa ba ito endorsement (Isn’t this an endorsement)?” the reelectionist lawmaker said in his caption.
Pimentel is PDP-Laban president, while Duterte is the party’s chairman. The Chief Executive ran under the PDP-Laban banner during the 2016 presidential elections.
Despite this, Duterte has his own senatorial slate for the midterm elections.
He has repeatedly endorsed during his speeches former Special Assistant to the President Bong Go, former Political Adviser Francis Tolentino, former Philippine National Police chief Ronald Dela Rosa, and musician Freddie Aguilar.
He had also mentioned reelectionist Sens. Sonny Angara and Cynthia Villar, as well as Taguig Representative Pia Cayetano and Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos, who have also supported his administration.
Just recently, Duterte bared that he will also campaign for former senator Jinggoy Estrada, and Maguindanao 2nd District Representative Zajid Mangudadatu in the senatorial race.
On Tuesday, at the first day of the official campaign period for senatorial candidates, Pimentel posted on social media the campaign advertisement of the PDP-Laban’s “MaBaGo Ko ‘To” slate, which featured no less than President Duterte.
In the 30-second clip, Duterte could be seen appealing to voters to “help” the PDP-Laban senatorial bets, whom he described as his “allies” in his “Change” agenda.
Pimentel, Go, Tolentino, Dela Rosa, and Mangudadatu make up the ruling political party’s slate. #MatalinongBoto2019