SAN JOSE DEL MONTE, Bulacan — President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on Thursday, February 14, led the proclamation and kick-off rally of the PDP-Laban senatorial candidates, offering the public a new set of public servants with proven track record, competence, and dedication to service.
In his speech during the event here, President Duterte asked the people to at least consider the administration’s senatorial line up, and shun supporting candidates who had lackluster performance in the past.
“Ako tingnan ninyo. Ako hindi ako nagbobola. Sabi ko three years after wala na ako. If you do not believe me, fine. Basta ako, huwag lang ninyo akong galawin,” President Duterte told the audience.
“But I’m trying to impress you with people who I think na mahal nila ang bayan at magtatrabaho at hindi magyabang at magsuplada. Iyon ang ginagawa ng naiwan diyan eh. Walang ginawa kung hindi mag-arte, akala mo naman marunong,” he added.
He particularly mentioned administration candidates like former PNP chief Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa, former Cabinet secretary Francis Tolentino, former Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, and Mindanao lawmaker Zajid “Dong” Mangudadatu.
In a brief media interview following the event, the President clarified that there is no issue if he and his daughter Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio support different sets of candidates. Some of the candidates being supported by the President belong to Mayor Duterte-Carpio’s Hugpong ng Pagbabago party.
According to the Chief Executive, he remains committed to his campaign pledge of fighting against illegal drugs, corruption, and criminality in the country and he needs people who can help him accomplish that.
Meanwhile, Duterte once again reached out to communist rebels by encouraging them to return to the folds of the law and embrace a normal life by surrendering.
The government is willing to assist them by providing home and livelihood if they return to mainstream society, he noted.
Remembering his shot at the presidency few years ago, he said he never envisioned seeing himself as president. He expressed his gratitude to the people of Bulacan for supporting him during the last presidential election.
“Pero dito sa Bulacan, nanalo ako. Salamat sa inyo at sa tiwala ninyo sa akin at hindi talaga kayo nagkakamali. Ako…sinabi ko sa inyo, ayaw ko ng krimen, ayaw ko ‘yang pag-api-api,” he said.
“I do not want oppression. Kaya ‘yang drugs na ‘yan, you are killing the people. Mahirap ‘yan…Hindi ko matanggap ‘yan,” he added.
The administration candidates are Mangudadatu, Dela Rosa, Go, Tolentino, and Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III.
Other senatorial candidates being supported by the President are Senators Cynthia Villar, Pia Cayetano, Sonny Angara, and JV Ejercito and Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee Marcos. PND