'Good for China' candidate must be rejected in 2022 polls — Del Rosario

Published July 21, 2021, 2:29 PM

by Roy Mabasa

A day after President Duterte threatened to sue him for claiming that China has interfered in the 2016 elections, former Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert Del Rosario curtly replied by encouraging the Filipino people to vote for the candidate who is good for the Philippines and “not one who is good for China”.

“For this coming election, our humble view is our people should vote for the candidate who is good for our country- and not one who is good for China,” Del Rosario said in a text message sent to reporters Tuesday night.

The President, during the latter’s regular Talk to the People program on Monday, July 20, 2021, was angered by Del Rosario’s latest allegation that a “most reliable international entity” informed him that China interfered in the 2016 presidential elections to get Duterte elected.

“Daldal ka nang daldal diyan. Anong China magtulong sa akin? G_go ka, saan mo nakuha ‘yan? (You keep on yakking. China helped me? You’re a fool, where did you get that?),” a visibly irked Duterte said during his nationwide broadcast.

In addressing his rant to Del Rosario, Duterte said he got no less than 16 million votes and more than six million of those votes were his majority margin “over your friend”, in apparent reference to then Liberal Party candidate Mar Roxas.

Duterte also turned the table against the former DFA secretary for allegedly ceding control of the Scarborough Shoal to China during the 2012 standoff.

“‘Pag nasilip ko lang (If I can discover it), I will charge you. Marami akong idedemanda sa’yo (I have many charges to file)… Kung at war lang tayo sana (If we were only at war), you are guilty of treason,” Duterte said in his regular address.

During last week’s commemoration of the July 2016 Arbitral Award that handed the Philippines its victory over China’s excessive claims in the South China Sea or the West Philippine Sea, Del Rosario disclosed that certain Chinese officials reportedly claimed that they were able to influence the 2016 elections in favor of Duterte.

“On February 22, 2019, we received information from a most reliable international entity that high officials from China are bragging that they had been able to influence the 2016 Philippine elections so that Duterte would be president,” Del Rosario said in a statement during a media forum.

Del Rosario, however, did not provide the names of the alleged Chinese officials nor the source of his information.

“We believe that our Beijing post can easily validate this. Moreover, subsequent actions of the President lend more credence to this information,” he added.