Alan Cayetano: I’m not giving up on Duterte

Reynaldo Santos Jr
Alan Cayetano: I’m not giving up on Duterte
He says he will still support Duterte even if the mayor decides to run without him

MANILA, Philippines – Vice presidential aspirant Senator Alan Peter Cayetano said he is not giving up on Davao Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, even as the mayor already said he is not running for president in 2016.

Cayetano on Wednesday, October 21, said there is still hope in convincing Duterte to run, citing the mayor’s pronouncements leaving the presidency up to God. (READ: Duterte on presidency: Leave it to God)

“Unang-una, we are not losing hope. Last Sunday sa isang gathering sinabi ni Mayor Duterte na Diyos lang naman makakapagsabi kung magiging president siya, meaning, he is open and leaving it to the Lord. Number 2, he said may December pa naman,” Cayetano said, referring to the deadline of substitution for candidacy.

(First of all, we are not losing hope. Last Sunday in a gathering, Mayor Duterte said that only God can tell if he will become president, meaning, he is open and leaving it to the Lord. Number 2, he said there’s still until December [to decide].)

Duterte’s party mate, PDP-Laban member Martin Diño filed his certificate of candidacy for president last minute on Friday, October 16. This fuels speculation that Duterte might substitute for Diño.

Cayetano said it is “important” for the mayor to run, as he is a game changer. Cayetano declared his vice presidential bid in Davao, widely seen as a move to court Duterte.

“Without ano no, there are good people running now, and many of them can offer something better for the Philippines. But for me, only Mayor Duterte can offer something different, something game-changing. Yung sa laki ng problema, siya lang ‘yung iba ang perspective eh. Iisa lang ang ganun eh, that’s why I’m not giving up.” Cayetano said.

(Without anything, there are good people running now and many of them can offer something better for the Philippines. But for me, only Mayor Duterte can offer something different, something game-changing. Given the size of the problem, he is the only one with a different perspective. He is the only one like that, that’s why I’m not giving up.)

Duterte all the way

The senator, despite actively seeking Duterte, belittled the power of political tandems, saying the public votes politicians individually.

“People ask me, ‘Hindi ka ba disadvantaged dahil wala kang presidente?’ Hindi, sila ang disadvantaged dahil isa lang presidente nila. Mapipilitan pa sila suportahan dahil ang tingin nila kailangan may tandem. Ako ang tingin ko, kung pareho kayong magaling, pareho kayong kukunin ng presidente. How many times ba na in-elect na magkasama?” he said.

(People ask me, ‘Are you not disadvantaged because you do not have a president? No, they are the ones disadvantaged because they only have one president. They will be forced to support [their president] because they think there should be a tandem. My belief is, if you are both good, the public will elect you and the president. How many times did the public elect a tandem?)

Cayetano said he is not keen on backing down, even as Duterte did not give any categorical support for the senator.

He said he would still support Duterte even if the mayor decides to run without him as running mate.

“I’m committed to run even if mag-isa. Even if iba kunin niyang vice president, I will support him. That is one of my opportunities being 23 years in government,” he said.

(I’m committed to run even if I’m alone. Even if he gets someone else, I will support him. That is one of my opportunities being 23 years in government.)

The senator said he is excited for change and for what Duterte “can actually do for the country.” 

“I am not saying he’s perfect, not everyone will agree on his methodologies, but he is someone na sasabihin sa ‘yo directly ano ang dapat gawin (who will tell you directly what to do),” he said. 

Cayetano said he is still in talks with Duterte and added they are set to meet again this week. – Rappler.com

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