Go says Duterte may seek VP post even without pres'l partner

Published September 2, 2021, 11:25 AM

by Mario Casayuran

President Duterte might decide to run for vice president in the forthcoming May 2022 elections even if he does not have a running mate, Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go on Thursday, September 2 said.

Yan sa ngayon, sa pagkakaalam ko po, wala (That is for now, as far as I know). Puwede po siyang tumakbo bilang isang Bise Presidente na walang ulo (He may decide to run as a vice president without a running mate). Ibig sabihin, magiging free for all ang kanyang ulo (This means, that the presidency will be free for all). So desisyon po iyon ng ating mahal na Pangulong Duterte as of today, na tatakbo po siya bilang Bise Presidente (That is the decision of our beloved President Duterte as of today, that he will run as vice president),” he said.

Go stated that if Duterte decides to run for vice president, he would support him.

He also expressed his support for a presidential candidate who could continue the progress that the current administration has begun.

As for himself, Go maintained his decision not to run for the presidency in the May 2022 national and local elections, despite appeals from his partymates to do so.

Go said in an interview that while he is grateful for the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino–Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban)’s trust and confidence in him when its National Executive Committee endorsed him as President Rodrigo Duterte’s running mate for the 2022 elections, he said he is already content serving the Filipino people as a senator.

“I am deeply honored by the trust and confidence of the members of the [PDP-Laban] National Executive Committee in my capability to run for presidency in the coming 2022 elections,” Go said when asked about his plans for the 2022 polls.

Napakalaking bagay po ‘yung endorsement na ‘yun mula po sa mga kapwa miyembro ko po sa PDP (The endorsement from my fellow members in PDP is already a big thing). It’s a great personal honor for me. But, as much as I wish to respond to the clamor of many of my party mates, I most respectfully decline the said endorsement,” he added.

In a letter dated August 30 to party president and Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, Go expressed his gratitude for the “trust and confidence” in him to be endorsed as presidential candidate and to run with President Duterte as vice presidential candidate.

Go made it clear that he is politely declining the endorsement.

Cusi responded to Go later that day in a letter, saying that the party’s National Executive Committee understands his decision but is still committed to endorsing him as the PDP-Laban presidential candidate.

The party president stressed that Go is “the best candidate to tandem with President Duterte” and that the two of them are “the best pair to lead our country forward.”

Despite his partymates’ constant support, Go stated that he is steadfast in his decision.

Ako na po ang nakikiusap sa inyo na unahin n’yo na lang po ‘yung mga interesado, ‘yung mga gusto, ‘yung mga atat na atat na tumakbo bilang pangulo (I am the one appealing to you to prioritize those who are interested, those want to, those who are eager to run as president). Alam n’yo, kuntento na po ako sa trabaho ko bilang senador at siguro naman po makakapagserbisyo pa rin po ako bilang inyong senador (I am already contented with my job as a senator and I am sure that I can still serve best as your senator),” he said.

Iyan naman po ang ipinangako ko sa mga kababayan natin – tulungan kayo na maiahon po tayo mula sa krisis na ito dulot ng COVID-19 (That is what I have promised to our countrymen – to help them rise back from the COVID-19 crisis). ‘Yun po ang una kong konsiderasyon sa ngayon – tutukan muna itong pandemyang ito at malampasan natin. (That is my primary consideration forf now – focus on this pandemic and overcome it).Ayaw kong pag-usapan po ‘yung pulitika. Dahil nakatutok po ako ngayon na malampasan muna natin itong krisis natin na tulungan po ‘yung mga mahihirap (I do not to talk about politics. Because I am now focused on how we can overcome the pandemic and help the poor),” he added.

So ngayon naman po, ako, bilang isang Senador ay handa po akong sumuporta and, of course, sa ating mahal na Pangulong Duterte kung ano pong magiging desisyon niya, kung tatakbo po siyang Bise Presidente (For now, I, as a senator, I am ready to support our beloved President Duterte whatever his decision would be, if he will run for vice president),” said Go

At sa Presidente naman po kung sino ‘yung makapagpapatuloy ng kanyang inumpisahang pagbabago, lalong-lalo na po ang kampanya laban sa korapsyon sa gobyerno, laban sa kriminalidad at laban sa iligal na droga, at dagdagan ninyo pa po ‘yung gobyernong nagmamalasakit sa kapwa Pilipino (And for the presidency, I will support anyone who will continue the reforms initiated by President Duterte, especially in the campaign against corruption in the government, against criminality and against illegal drugs, and the government that cares for fellow Filipinos),” he added.

As the country grapples with the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Go stressed that he is now more inclined to serve the Filipino people until the country and its people have overcome the public health emergency.

Unang-una rin sa ngayon, ‘yung COVID-19 response, paano natin maipagpapatuloy, malalampasan po itong pandemyang ito. Importante dyan, ‘yung katimbang ni Pangulong Duterte na kayang ipagpatuloy ang magagandang nagawa niya po (First and foremost for now,the COVID-19 response, how can we continue, overcome this pandemic. What is important, is the equal of President Duterte who can continue the beautiful things he had started),” he added.

 
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