Spox assures senatorial bid not part of his agenda

Published January 27, 2021, 12:50 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

Will Presidential spokesman Harry Roque run for senator in next year’s elections?

Roque, a former lawmaker, would rather focus on his present job as the President’s spokesman for now than dwell on his political future.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque

“Sabi ko nga para maging epektibo ako bilang tagapagsalita, kinakailangan eh isantabi muna iyang mga planong iyan ‘no at sabihin kung anong kinakailangan sabihin sa taumbayan (I said that to be an effective spokesperson, one must set aside those plans and say what must be said to the people),” he said during a televised press briefing Tuesday.

“Kung ikaw kasi ay palaging nanliligaw eh limitado ang iyong puwedeng sabihin, limitado ang iyong aktuwasyon (If you’re always courting votes, your statements and actions will be limited),” he added.

In 2018, Roque resigned as Duterte’s spokesman to run for an elective post in the elections. He later dropped his Senate candidacy in 2019 after undergoing a heart procedure. Roque returned to his old job at the Palace last April as the government was in the middle of communicating to the public its pandemic response.

“Ngayon po (At present) I think I’ve been liberated, bereft of political plans, I can say what I say and in a manner that I think should be done. So hindi po nagbabago ang ating paninindigan (My belief has not changed),” Roque said.
Roque has recently drawn online flak for controversial statements, including his most recent comment that people cannot be choosy with the brand of the coronavirus vaccines. The Palace official however is unperturbed by the online bashing which he believed will only sustain his popularity on social media.