Marcos camp: PDP-Laban wing ‘adoption’ of Sara Duterte ‘unilateral’, but deserves respect

MANILA, Philippines — The decision of a PDP-Laban wing to adopt Davao City mayor Inday Sara Duterte-Carpio as its vice presidential candidate is a “unilateral” move, but deserves “utmost respect”, the camp of presidential aspirant Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. said Friday.

Atty. Vic Rodriguez, Marcos’ spokesperson, said Duterte-Carpio’s parties — Lakas-CMD and Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) — informed them that “there was no signing of an accord between them and PDP-Laban, nor a semblance of any formality to forge an agreement for Mayor Sara’s ‘adoption’.”

Rodriguez was referring to an earlier announcement of the PDP-Laban wing led by Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi and backed by President Rodrigo Duterte that it is adopting Duterte-Carpio as its vice presidential candidate.

“As far as the Partido Federal ng Pilipinas, the party of presidential aspirant Bongbong Marcos, and the UniTeam are concerned, such ‘adoption’, though a UNILATERAL move by the PDP-Laban (Cusi faction) deserves our utmost respect,” Rodriguez said in a statement.

Rodriguez said Lakas-CMD and HNP “remain strongly committed to its alliance with presidential aspirant Bongbong Marcos.”

“PDP-Laban (Cusi faction) announcement adopting vice-presidential aspirant Mayor Sara Duterte is but an expression of its freedom of choice,” Rodriguez said.

Lakas-CMD chairman Senator Bong Revilla, meanwhile, said his party and PDP-Laban are now finalizing the terms of their alliance for the 2022 national and local elections.

“The two most dominant political parties coming together is a very welcome development in ensuring a better and brighter future for the country and our kababayans,” Revilla said in a statement.

A welcome development

The Lakas-CMD, meanwhile, has not made a comment yet on the signing of a formal alliance agreement between Lakas-CMD and Cusi’s PDP-Laban wing.

Nonetheless, it said the party welcomes the development, saying it is “an opportunity to renew our partnership with PDP-Laban.”

“Mayor Inday Sara has been espousing unity and cohesion for a better Philippines under the BBM-Sara UniTeam alliance that includes Partido Federal ng Pilipinas (PFP) of presidential aspirant Bongbong Marcos, to which Lakas-CMD has been very supportive,” Lakas-CMD said in a statement.

“The Lakas-CMD is always open to alliances and partnerships with other parties and political groups which share our ideals and vision for the common good of the country,” it added.

The Cusi wing of PDP-Laban has not announced yet which candidate it will back in the presidential race. Notably, it has not endorsed Marcos who is Duterte-Carpio’s running mate.

Asked why the wing has not endorsed Marcos, Cusi said they “still have to be convinced.”

“It’s not just a question of what you hear, what they say. What’s important is what you do,” Cusi said.

“Sa pulitiko lahat, pati langit, pati impyerno ipapangako natin, pero ang kuwan doon ay ano ba talaga ang gagawin natin? So it is the credibility of the person,” he added.

(For politicians, they promise heaven and hell. But what’s important is what will you do? It’s the credibility of the person.)

To recall, President Duterte has criticized Marcos and at one point calling the latter a “weak leader.”

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