Sara Duterte hits ally’s ‘grossly unacceptable’ ouster from key House post

Robie de Guzman   •   March 3, 2020   •   1245

Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio

MANILA, Philippines – Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, who chairs the regional party Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) blasted the removal of Davao City Third District Representative Isidro Ungab as head of the House Committee on Appropriations in the lower chamber’s major shake-up on Monday.

In a statement on Tuesday, Duterte-Carpio said the HNP “strongly condemns” Ungab’s removal from the key House post, calling it “grossly unacceptable” and “disadvantageous” to the reform agenda being pushed by the Duterte government.

“For HNP, the ouster of Ungab was grossly unacceptable as it is disadvantageous to the Duterte administration’s reform agenda for the Filipino people and the country,” she said.

Also booted out from post is Oriental Mindoro Representative Paulino Salvador “Doy” Leachon as head of the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal.

House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano earlier said Ungab and Leachon were removed from their posts because they were “more interested in funds and intrigues” than working with him.

The shake-up follows Cayetano’s accusations against Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Velasco of attempting to stage a coup to grab the top House post.

Velasco has denied the allegation.

Duterte-Carpio said Ungab is a good soldier of the President who did his job with pride and principle.

She, however, denied any personal knowledge on the alleged coup attempt.

Meanwhile, Leachon claimed that Cayetano’s move was just a smokescreen of his alleged intention of not honoring the term-sharing agreement with Velasco as brokered by President Rodrigo Duterte.

“You’ve been telling that there was a coup in order to, as I said it was a smokescreen para pagtaguan ang tunay na dahilan na gusto mo magtagal sa position para diridiretso ang enjoyment ng kasamahan or ikaw partikular ka sa iyong probinsya to the detriment of other members,” he said.

It can be recalled that in July 2019, Duterte brokered a “15-21” term-sharing deal between Cayetano and Velasco to settle the conflict in the then-House speakership race.

Under the deal, Cayetano will serve the first 15 months while Velasco will serve the remaining 21 months of the three-year term. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Vincent Arboleda)

Palace backs Sara Duterte remarks vs Leni Robredo over Davao COVID-19 case surge

Robie de Guzman   •   June 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang on Monday backed Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio’s statements against Vice President Leni Robredo over the surge of COVID-19 cases in Davao City.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said he supports Mayor Sara’s remark that Robredo should stop “politicking” the Davao City’s response to the COVID-19 situation.

“Tigil na muna ni VP Leni ang pamumulitika,” Roque said at a Palace briefing.

“Sasagot naman po si Mayor Sara as Mayor of Davao City kapag po, the VP ‘dares to run for president’. So, abangan po natin ang engkwentro ng dalawa. Parating naman po yan,” he added.

On Monday, Duterte-Carpio told Robredo to “refrain from giving advice” if she knows nothing about the city government’s responses against COVID-19.

Duterte also said that Robredo “should not attack the medical community of Davao City as being inactive when they have been silently suffering and working tirelessly to help save lives since March of last year.”

“The VP should avoid involving the Covid-19 surge in Davao City in her attempt at politicking. There will be a proper time to attack my performance as an LCE in this pandemic if she dares to run for President,” she added.

Robredo earlier said that Davao City should learn from the experience of Cebu City in terms of handling the coronavirus surge when it became the epicenter of COVID-19 in the country.

The vice president’s camp has yet to comment on Duterte-Carpio’s statements. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

Duterte on calls for VP run: I’m ready for retirement

Robie de Guzman   •   June 9, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte said he wants to retire after his term as president and has no plans to run for any position in the 2022 elections.

“I’m ready for retirement,” Duterte said in an interview aired over SMNI channel on Tuesday.

Duterte issued the remark amid the call of his PDP-Laban party for him to seek vice presidency in next year’s elections to ensure continuity of his programs.

“Mahirap yan kasi mag-retire na ako and this time, ako ang mamili ng presidente. Tapos ‘pag manalo sabihin nila, ano lang yan, perpetuate yourself in power. So nagre-resist ako,” he said.

When asked about his plans after his term as president, Duterte said he prefers to return to his home town of Davao City and retire.

He also admitted that he has someone in mind that he thinks may continue his legacy but prefers to stay “neutral” for now.

He promised to reveal his preferences in due time.

The chief executive also reiterated his earlier stance that he does not want his daughter, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, to run for president next year.

“Si Inday (Sara Duterte) kinausap ko talaga kagabi. ‘Do not run. Do not ever commit the mistake of running for the presidency,’” he said.

“I don’t mean to insult the Filipino people. Presidente? Wala ka talagang makuha. Wala para sa iyo, except for one thing, yung sense of fulfillment mo sa kapwa tao mo, na may nagawa ka,” he added.

When asked if there is one thing he is proud of during his term as president, Duterte said his “greatest achievement” was “exposing” the oligarchy in the country.

“But if you ask me, what is my greatest achievement in a very humble [way], ako Pastor, I exposed the oligarchy in the Philippines,” he said.

Malacañang earlier said Duterte is still pondering on his 2022 plans and that he may likely reveal it to the public in December.

Ex-rep. Andaya claims ‘everything is set’ for Sara-Gibo tandem

Marje Pelayo   •   June 7, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Following the visit of former Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro to Davao City to meet with Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, rumors of a possible Sara-Gibo tandem in the 2022 presidential elections surfaced.

The one who set up the meeting, former Camarines Sur representative Rolando Andaya Jr., told UNTV News that the preparations for the Sara-Gibo tandem are underway.

According to Andaya, the two are working on how they will strengthen their forces across the country.

“Money is not a problem. Financing is not a problem. It’s already there. It’s already fixed before we landed in Manila coming from Davao so everything is set. What we are talking about now in inner circles is how they will promote their tandem nationwide. We are in that stage already,” Andaya said.

Andaya announced that the two will run independently and will not ask any endorsement from other parties.

The former congressman is confident that the Duterte-Carpio and Teodoro tandem is the ‘gold standard’ in the presidential and vice presidential race.

“When I looked at both of them, I was watching them intently when they were conversing with each other, kinikilig ako eh. Para akong nanonood ng pelikula ng box office. I’m sure when people get to see them together, they’ll get the same feeling,” Andaya noted.

The UNTV News tried to ask Teodoro for comments but he declined while Mayor Duterte did not confirm if she is running in the 2022 elections.

Likewise, there is no confirmation yet if President Rodrigo Duterte will run in the coming elections.

“In the first place, he was nominated. At ang sagot ko lang naman diyan, syempre kailangan sagutin yung nominasyon, kaya pinag-iisipan. Pero wala pa pong desisyon ang Presidente,” said Presidential Spokesperson Sec. Harry Roque.

Meanwhile, Senate President Vicente Sotto III confirmed that he would become the running mate of Senator Panfilo Lacson if the latter decides to run for president.

“Nung sinabi ko na we are seriously contemplating on it, kasi there are some groups and some sectors that have approached me and Sen. Lacson. If Sen. Lacson decides to run for president, I will definitely be his running mate,” he said in a statement.

“I am not in the habit of saying that I will not run and then all of a sudden I will file my certificate of candidacy. Let the other politicians do that. Not on our party,” he added.

The filing of COC for the 2022 elections is set in October. MNP (with reports from Harlene Delgado)

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