By Ben Rosario
TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol – Opposition Rep. Tom Villarin needs divine intervention to help him get over a lot of “personal turmoil”, according to Hugpong ng Pagbabago chairperson and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte.
After two weeks of ignoring a series of criticisms hurled her way in order not to get into another verbal tussle with the opposition, Duterte spewed sarcasm at Villarin who had accused her of “sabotaging” the chances of HNP senatorial candidates by engaging the Otso Diretso bets in a verbal skirmish.
An outspoken critic of President Duterte, Villarin also chided the HNP chief for allegedly upstaging the senatorial candidates she is supposed to be supporting.
Asked by newsmen to respond to Villarin’s claims, Duterte hesitated for a while before responding to the opposition solon’s attack.
“I feel na dapat siya i-bless ng Diyos. Madami pang personal turmoil na nangyayari sa kanya, pag-uugali na kailangan i-bless ng Diyos,” she stated. (I feel he should get blessing from God. He is experiencing numerous personal turmoil, his behavior should be blessed by God)
This is the first time the feisty Davao City mayor responded to the opposition’s unabated tirade in nearly two weeks when her mother, Elizabeth Zimmerman, reminded her to avoid arguing with the opposition.
Reporters covering the HNP senatorial caravan have asked her comment to numerous criticisms from opposition but the lady mayor would remind them of her mother’s advice.
It will be recalled that Duterte skipped the Bicol region phase of the HNP campaign two weeks ago and flew back to Davao City to spend time with her mother and take care of a family problem.
She returned to the campaign trail to lead the 13-man HNP senatorial ticket in its on-going Visayas sorties.
Villarin got Duterte’s goat when he accused her of putting more premium to her future political plans instead of campaigning for the HNP national candidates.
“I think that Mayor Sara Duterte is overdoing her role as campaign manager and is projecting more herself than her senatorial bets,” Villarin told House reporters recently.
However, news media embedded in the HNP campaign noted that the regional party’s chairperson has not discussed anything about herself whenever she speaks in campaign rallies.
Her campaign spiel usually includes endorsement of candidates, their accomplishments and platform. She always intersperse her speech with an account of of anecdotes about the candidates, including those of re-electionist Senators.JV Ejercito, Cynthia Villar and Edgardo Angara, former PNP chief Ronald “Bato” de la Rosa, former Malacanang officials Christopher “Bong” Go and Francis Tolentino, Jinggoy Estrada and Maguindanao Rep. Zajid “Dong” Mangudadatu.