Decision to field Dela Rosa for president ‘deliberate’ to ward off critics
MANILA, Philippines — The decision for Senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa to run for president in the 2022 elections under a faction of the PDP-Laban was made long ago but was deliberately kept secret as a tactical move, the senator himself said on Friday.
Dela Rosa said it was the PDP-Laban Cusi wing’s decision for him to run but he is also willing.
“Matagal na! Matagal na pero tinatago lang namin,” he said in a speech at the Sofitel hotel where he filed his certificate of candidacy for president. He was asked when the decision for him to run was made.
(It was long ago but we only kept it secret.)
“‘Yan ‘yung mga diskarte kasi kung maaga ka magbalita, wala, titirahin ka kaagad,” he added.
(It was a tactical move because if we announced it early, I would have been criticized.)
In a surprise move on Friday, less than an hour before the filing of COCs closes, Dela Rosa formalized his presidential bid as he filed his COC.
The PDP-Laban has kept mum about its presidential candidate ever since its initially preferred standard-bearer, Senator Bong Go, filed his COC for vice president.
Even before then, it was unsure who the PDP-Laban presidential candidate will be because Go has not accepted the party’s nomination.
President Rodrigo Duterte’s initial vice presidential bid was likewise thwarted when he announced his intention to retire from politics instead after his term.
Dela Rosa was a first-time senator when he won in the 2019 elections. Prior to that, he was Duterte’s chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), where his stint was tainted by bloody drug war killings.
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