‘Bongbong-Bong’ tandem? BBM says open to running with Bong Go

Robie de Guzman   •   October 6, 2021   •   452

MANILA, Philippines – Presidential hopeful Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Wednesday expressed openness to a possible partnership with Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go in the upcoming elections.

During a brief interview with the media, Marcos said a possible tandem with Go is not far-fetched as he does not have a running mate for now.

Go earlier filed his candidacy for vice president in the 2022 national elections.

“Paano yun? Bongbong-Bong? Bong to the third power? Baka pwede rin we’ll see,” Marcos said.

The son and namesake of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos revealed that he was supposed to “adopt” President Rodrigo Duterte as his running mate as they came from different political parties.

The plan, however, did not push through after Duterte made a surprise move in withdrawing his plan to run as vice president and announced his retirement after his term ends in 2022.

“The original plan was for us to adopt PRRD for our vice presidential candidate pero sa mga nangyari nuong nakaraang Sabado eh nagbago lahat ng plano. Kaya’t ngayon, nagkokonsulta kami sa partido at siyempre yung ibang kasamahan kung ano ang dapat gawin,” he said.

He also disclosed that he previously met with presidential daughter and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte but there were no discussions about a possible political tandem.

Sara Duterte has filed her COCO for re-election. She has repeatedly said she has no plans to seek a national post in next year’s polls despite earning the support of various political parties.

Duterte also refused to comment on questions on whether she will change her mind on running for president after her father mentioned the possibility of Sara-Go tandem.


PDP Laban’s ‘BaGo’ tandem received well by supporters

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—Partido Demoratiko Pilipino-Lakas Bayan (PDP-Laban) said the tandem of  presidential aspirant Senator Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa with Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go as his vice president has been well received by supporters.

PDP-Laban Secretary General Melvin Matibag said the party is set to roll out the caravan this week for the two candidates dubbed as the “BaGo” tandem.

“We are ready for that, we are preparing for that. But let me state it again, we are already rolling the campaign of Bato-Go tandem. Sabi nga namin, “BaGo 2022’ para sa tuloy-tuloy na pagbabago (BaGo 2022 for change to continue),” he said.

Matibag added that it may look like a last-minute decision but Dela Rosa has been one of the choices as the standard-bearer of the ruling party since months ago, and his selection went through the proper process.

“He [Bato] is being received very well,” Matibag said.

“I admire the humility of Senator Bato na sinasabi niya, ‘Hindi naman talaga ako, mayroon talagang ibang pwede,’  and that is a good character of a next president of the republic,” he added. AAC


DILG warns poll bets vs paying ‘permit to campaign’ fees to communist rebels

Robie de Guzman   •   October 13, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Wednesday warned all candidates in the 2022 national and local elections against paying the so-called permit to campaign fees to the communist rebels.

In a statement, DILG Secretary Eduardo Año reminded candidates of the Memorandum Circular 2019-26, which calls this modus operandi as a “clear form of extortion and defilement of the sanctity of the right to suffrage.”

“Huwag po tayong magpaloko at matakot. Ang ibabayad n’yong extortion money sa mga komunista ay gagamitin din nila para makapaghasik ng terorismo sa bansa,” he adds.

In the said directive, Año enjoined local government units (LGUs) and the Philippine National Police to ensure that all candidates are allowed unhampered entrance in every LGU and guarantee peace and order in all areas especially those considered as hotspots for insurgency.

“All local officials should steer clear of directly or indirectly giving financial, material and political support to the CPP-NPA since this is a clear violation of law. This is something that the DILG under my leadership will never tolerate,” he said.

LGUs are also directed to ensure that all citizens desiring to exercise their right to suffrage are allowed and encouraged, and their rights are protected when participating in political assemblies and meetings and in the dissemination and receipt of information of any and all election-related matters.

“We must secure all candidates and political parties and ensure that they are given access to the electorate during the campaign period without intimidation and manipulation from communist terrorist groups,” he said.

The DILG said it will file disqualification cases against candidates who will be proven to have supported and cooperated with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army.

“Supporting communist terrorist groups through financing or other means is an election offense and is sufficient to cause the disqualification of a candidate,” DILG Undersecretary and Spokesperson Jonathan Malaya said in the same statement.

“We will follow through on our words, those politicians who will be proven as accomplices of the CPP-NPA will face disqualification cases from the DILG,” he said.

The DILG also cited Section 4 of Republic Act (RA) 10168 known as ‘The Terrorism Financing Prevention and Suppression Act of 2012’, which states that any person who finances terrorist groups to carry out or facilitate the commission of any terrorist act, by a terrorist organization, association or group, or by an individual terrorist, shall be guilty of the crime of financing terrorism.

Malaya said that under RA 10168, the crime of financing terrorism is punishable by the penalty of reclusion temporal in its maximum period to reclusion perpetua and a fine of not less than Five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000) to not more than One million pesos (P1,000,000).

Such is also punishable under Section 261 of the Omnibus Election Code of the Philippines which can render the accused “permanent disqualification to hold public office” with imprisonment of one to six years, he added.


Bong Go denies ‘substitution’ speculations

Maris Federez   •   October 13, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Senator Christopher “Bong” Go has denied speculations that he is paving the way for the candidacy of another individual through substitution. He reiterated that he is committed to his decision to run for vice president in the upcoming 2022 national elections, a statement released Wednesday (October 13) said.

“I can’t speak for the other candidates. Hindi po ako makapagsalita kung ano po ang magiging desisyon ng partido. As far as I am concerned, sa aking tinakbuhang posisyon, desidido na po ako,” Go said in an interview during the launch of the country’s 143rd Malasakit Center in Tangub City, Misamis Occidental on Tuesday.

Go said that President Rodrigo Duterte’s plan to retire from politics prompted him to take on the challenge to run for vice president.

He further noted PDP-Laban’s preparations for the elections, stressing that someone must step forward for the party so that the administration may continue its programs and pursue further the positive change that the president has started.

“Ang importante para sa akin ngayon ay economic recovery, makabalik na tayo sa normal na pamumuhay. ‘Yun po ang importante,” he added.

Go, nevertheless, stressed that despite his vice presidential bid, he remains focused on his duties as a senator and public servant.

“Ayaw ko munang pag-usapan ang pulitika kaya parati kong sinasabi, bakuna muna bago ang pulitika dahil baka wala na tayong pag-usapang pulitika kung hindi natin malampasan ang krisis na ito. Buhay po ang nakataya dito,” he said. —/mbmf


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