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The Philippine Star : Marcos: Go withdrawal signals 'consolidation of administration forces'

News & Interviews
15 December 2021

By Kristine Joy Patag | The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Presidential aspirant Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. lauded Sen. Bong Go's withdrawal of his election bid, which he said, "signals consolidation of administration forces" behind his and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio's tandem.

President Rodrigo Duterte had picked Go, his long-time aide and constant companion, to be his successor. With his withdrawal from the presidential race, Marcos offered to continue Duterte's policies. Duterte has, himself, withdrawn his candidacy for senator.

"The call for a unified nation is getting stronger by the day. The withdrawal of Sen. Bong Go from the presidential race reinforces this current and signals the consolidation of administration forces to the BBM-Sara UniTeam," Marcos said in a statement on Wednesday.

Duterte-Carpio earlier thanked Go for "heeding" her request for unity among supporters of the Duterte administration and said Wednesday that his and her father's withdrawals are personal decisions. "We can only support that decision."

Go official filed his withdrawal before the Commission on Elections on Tuesday, two weeks after he first acknowledged that he is ill-prepared for the campaign.

Duterte has yet to say who he is backing for president with Go out of the running. He has however referred to Marcos in public speeches as a "weak leader." 

"If given a chance, the BBM-Sara UniTeam shall continue his legacy programs, and guided by his wisdom, even enhance some of them when necessary," he added.

As it is, the country's four biggest political clans are rallying behind the Marcos and Duterte-Carpio tandem. These are: Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's Lakas - Christian Muslim Democrats, Duterte-Carpio's Hugpong ng Pagbabago, former President Joseph Estrada's Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino and Marcos-led Partido Federal ng Pilipinas.

In a separate statement, Sen. Panfilo Lacson — also a candidate for president — said of the withdrawals that "President Duterte and Senator Bong Go have chosen peace as their path. Let’s give it to them and wish them well."