By Michelle R. Guillang | Daily Tribune
President Duterte’s supporters are loyal to President Duterte and the Marcos loyalists are loyal to the former Senator Bongbong
Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go’s withdrawal from the 2022 presidential derby is an opportunity for pro-administration supporters to jointly support the bids of presidential aspirant Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., and Davao City Mayor Inday Sara Duterte-Carpio, former presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said on Wednesday.
Panelo, a senatorial aspirant, acknowledged that there is division among the supporters of the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.
He noted that one group of supporters is supporting Go, the President’s preferred successor, while the other backs Duterte-Carpio and her chosen running mate, Marcos.
“This trend will pave the way for the unity of the administration’s supporters and Inday Sara’s group with former Senator Bongbong Marcos, because now they have conflicting political positions,” Panelo said in Filipino.
“President Duterte’s supporters are loyal to President Duterte and the Marcos loyalists are loyal to the former Senator Bongbong,” he explained.
He added that even if Duterte is no longer seeking a Senate seat next year, the Chief Executive will continue to advocate for the reforms he initiated towards national development and peace.
“Perhaps it is time for President Duterte to rest after more than 30 years of honest public service and after carrying out radical reforms and changes in all aspects of society and implementing the astonishing infrastructures that have brought comfort to the Filipino people,” Panelo said.
Duterte first joined government service when he was appointed officer-in-charge for vice mayor of Davao City by President Corazon Aquino following the 1986 People Power Revolution.
He successfully ran for mayor in 1998 and served as the local chief executive for over 22 years.
Go, meanwhile, has served as the personal aide and special assistant to Duterte since 1998.
Duterte and Go separately filed their withdrawal statements at the Commission on Elections headquarters in Intramuros on Tuesday, 14 December.