Malacañang expects Go, Bato, Tolentino to be independent as senators

Robie de Guzman   •   May 16, 2019   •   2208

(L-R) Former Philippine National Police chief Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa, former presidential adviser Francis Tolentino, former special assistant to the president Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang on Thursday (May 16) said it expects incoming senators, particularly those who are close allies of President Rodrigo Duterte, to be independent when it comes to issues involving national interest.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo made the statement following concerns that the check and balances in government may be affected as administration-backed Senate bets look set to join the upper chamber of Congress.

Partial and unofficial count from the Commission on Elections (Comelec) showed that nine Senate bets endorsed by Duterte are in the top 12.

These are reelectionist Senator Cynthia Villar, former special assistant to the president Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, former Philippine National Police chief Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa, former presidential adviser Francis Tolentino, House Deputy Speaker Pia Cayetano, reelectionist senators Sonny Angara and Koko Pimentel, Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos and former Senator Bong Revilla.

Three of them – Go, Dela Rosa and Tolentino – are known close allies of Duterte.

Panelo, however, believes that the three will do their job well and always put first the best interest of the nation.

 “It’s just happened that they are very close to the president but that doesn’t mean they will be subservient,” he said.

“Whether or not Senate or Congress is dominated by the allies of whoever is incumbent, we expect them to pass economic reforms that will be beneficial to the Filipino people. The issue on whether you are an ally or not should not be discussed,” he added.

Panelo stressed that the mandate of the Congress is to pass laws that will be beneficial for the people.

“It’s about time to eradicate the discussion on parties’ consideration. That is where we fail,” he said.

Aside from Duterte’s allies, other senatorial candidates who are in the winners’ circle based on partial tally are reelectionist senators Grace Poe, Nancy Binay, and former senator Lito Lapid. (with details from Rosalie Coz)

Pangulong Duterte, wala pang pasya kung sino ang iendorsong presidential bet – Malakanyang

Robie de Guzman   •   December 3, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Umapela ang Malakanyang sa publiko na bigyan pa ng panahon si Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte upang magpasya sa kung sino ang susuportahan nitong kandidato sa pagka-pangulo sa 2022 elections.

Kasunod na rin ito ng pag-atras sa halalan ng ini-endorso niyang si Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go.

“Si Pangulo has options, has choices that he has to make and we should give him the time to make those options; to make those choices; to make those decisions and give him the leeway to make the announcement kung kinakailangan at kung kailan niya gusto gawin. Hintayin na lang po natin si Pangulong Duterte,” ang pahayag ni acting Presidential Spokesperson Karlo Nograles.

Una nang sinabi ni Go na umatras siya sa halalan dahil ayaw aniya ng kanyang pamilya na sumabak ito sa presidential race.

Ayaw rin umano niyang ilagay sa mahirap na sitwasyon ang pangulo dahil sa pagtakbo ng anak nitong si Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte bilang bise presidente, katambal ni presidential aspirant Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.

Sinabi naman ng pangulo na iginagalang niya ang desisyon ni Go lalo’t para ito sa kapakanan ng kanyang pamilya.

Noong Martes inianunsyo ni Go ang pag-atras sa halalan ngunit hindi pa ito personal na humaharap sa Commission on Elections upang pormal na bawiin ang kandidatura.

Kasunod ng pag-atras ni Go, nanawagan naman ang mga kaalyado ng administrasyon na suportahan na lang ng pangulo ang tambalang Bongbong at Sara para sa 2022 elections.

Duterte says he respects Bong Go’s decision to drop 2022 presidential bid

Robie de Guzman   •   December 3, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte said he respects the decision of Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go to withdraw from the presidential race in the 2022 elections.

Duterte made the statement during a speech before the Joint National Task Force-Regional Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict in Zamboanga City on Thursday.

“Senator Bong Go, ano ba talaga, Bong? Tatakbo ka o hindi?” he said.

“Well, I would like to off-the-cuff statement. You have made a lot of people sad than happy. We respect your decision lalo na kung pamilya. Wala na tayong magawa diyan,” he added.

Last Tuesday, Go announced he won’t be pursuing his presidential bid because his family does not want him to seek the presidency. He also does not want to put Duterte in a difficult situation.

Go’s announcement came days after he admitted to having a hard time and being hesitant in seeking the country’s top post as he was already set to run for vice president.

Duterte’s former aide turned senator initially filed his candidacy for vice president under the PDP-Laban faction led by Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi.

But he withdrew his candidacy to run for president under Pederalismo ng Dugong Dakilang Samahan (PDDS) party through substitution.

Bong Go withdrew from the vice presidential race after presidential daughter, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte filed her candidacy for vice president under Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD) party.

Go has yet to formalize his withdrawal following his announcement.

The Commission on Elections earlier said aspirants must personally appear before the poll body to file their statements of withdrawal. (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

Bong Go withdraws presidential bid for 2022 polls

Robie de Guzman   •   November 30, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go on Tuesday announced he is no longer running for president in the 2022 elections.

In a statement, Go said he is dropping out of the presidential race because his family does not want him to seek the presidency.

He also does not want to put President Rodrigo Duterte in a difficult situation.

“Ayaw rin talaga ng aking pamilya. Kaya naisip ko na siguro nga ay hindi ko pa panahon sa ngayon. Diyos lang ang nakakaalam kung kailan talaga ang tamang panahon ko,” he said.

“Ayaw ko rin pong lalong maipit si Pangulong Duterte. Higit pa po sa tatay ang pagmamahal ko sa kanya. Matanda na po siya at marami na siyang naibigay sa bayan kung kaya’t ayaw ko nang dagdagan pa ang kanyang problema,” he added.

Go’s announcement came a week after he admitted having a hard time and being hesitant about seeking the top post in the country as he was set to run for vice president.

“Alam naman ng lahat na naging kandidato na po ako sa pagka-Bise Presidente sa loob ng mahigit isang buwan, 40 days to be exact. Subalit, dahil sa mga pangyayaring hindi inaasahan, kailangan ko pong magpaubaya,” he said.

He also reiterated his willingness to “make the supreme sacrifice for the good of our country and for the sake of unity” among their supporters.

“In the past few days po, I realized that my heart and mind are contradicting my own actions. Talagang nagreresist po ang aking katawan, puso at isipan. Tao lang po ako na nasasaktan at napapagod din,” he said.

“Sa ngayon po, iyon po ang mga rason ko. That is why I am withdrawing from the race,” he added.

Go thanked his supporters for their trust in him and President Duterte.

“Lubos ang aking pasasalamat sa lahat ng supporters na walang tigil na nagtitiwala sa akin at kay Pangulong Duterte. Kaya gusto kong magpakatotoo sa inyong lahat at ayaw ko nang patagalin pa ang bigat ng nararamdaman ko,” he said.

Meanwhile, Go advised presidential aspirants to always put first the welfare of the country and the interest of Filipinos.

Prior to serving as senator in 2019, Go served as Duterte’s special assistant.

 

 

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