Davao City Vice Mayor Rodrigo Duterte has given hint he and children Mayor Sara Duterte and city councilor Paolo Duterte may run for the city’s top posts in next year’s polls, but doused speculations he was building a political dynasty.
Duterte, in the Give Us This Day television program on ACQ Network aired Wednesday night, said he sees nothing wrong with three Dutertes running, saying families running together in elections is a reality voters must have to face in the Philippine political setting. .
He said, in the program hosted by Pastor Apollo C. Quiboloy, head of The Kingdom of Jesus Christ The Name Above Every Name, that there is democracy in Davao City and if he and children run together, he would not “bully voters into voting” for the Dutertes.
The question is: Are the Dabawenyos ready for three Dutertes? he said in the late night television program.
But Duterte said the three of them running, and the positions they would run for, is up for decision by the Hugpong sa Tawong Lungsod, Hugpong is the home-grown political bloc founded by the vice mayor.
Speculations are that Duterte would be returning to the top City Hall post he held for 18 years, Mayor Sara running in the First District congressional race and councilor Duterte taking a crack at the vice mayorship.
In the other side of the political fence, talks are that former House Speaker Prospero Nograles is staging a comeback to run for Congress against Mayor Sara Duterte, with son incumbent congressman Karlo Nograles running for vice mayor against councilor Duterte. Nograles was miserably beaten by Mayor Duterte by more than 200,000 votes in the mayoral race in the 2010 elections.
Duterte said he and children running together is not unique in Davao City, saying that political arch-rival Nograles could have built a “political dynasty” had fate been kind to him.
Nograles was thrice beaten in the mayoral races: against Duterte in 1992, against then political ally and protege Benjamin de Guzman in 1998 and by Mayor Sara Duterte in the last elections. Nograles, who had two sons and brothers who could join politics if he had captured City Hall, has carved out son incumbent congressman Karlo as an heir apparent.
Much of the city’s progress has been credited by Dabawenyos on Duterte who first became mayor in 1988. From an annual income of P300 million when he took over City Hall, Davao City has become the premier city of Mindanao, with annual revenue breaching the P5 billion mark.
Prior to the 2007 elections, when he picked daughter Sara as his vice mayor, Duterte said Davao City “needed young political blood” with him approaching retirement age.
In the ACQ program, Duterte said he would retire from politics only if Nograles is out of the picture of the local political scene.