Duterte’s 3 eldest children running in 2019

Pia Ranada
Duterte’s 3 eldest children running in 2019
Sara Duterte is seeking reelection as mayor, Paolo is running for Davao City 1st District congressman, and Sebastian is running for Davao City vice mayor

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte’s 3 eldest children are seeking the highest local positions in their hometown of Davao City.

The President’s eldest son Paolo is running for Davao City 1st District congressman and was the first of the 3 to file his certificate of candidacy (COC) on Friday, October 12.

On Monday, October 15, Sara Duterte Carpio filed her COC for Davao City mayor, a post she currently holds.

On Wednesday, October 17, the last day for COC filing, Duterte’s youngest son Sebastian formalized his bid for vice mayor, marking his entry into politics.

The 3 are Duterte’s children with his first wife Elizabeth Zimmerman.

Veronica, Duterte’s child with Honeylet Avanceña, is only 13 years old.

The President himself was Davao City’s longest serving mayor, having held the post for some two decades.

Victories by all 3 in 2019 would cement the domination of the Duterte family as it would be the first time that the highest local positions in Davao City would be occupied by members of a single family. (READ: The Dutertes: A family in the national spotlight)

Similar pattern

It’s not unusual in Philippine politics for the children of presidents to seek electoral positions.

Former president Joseph Estrada’s two sons Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito and Jinggoy Estrada are both running for senator in 2019. Joseph Estrada’s wife, Loi, was also a former senator. San Juan City’s incumbent Mayor Guia Gomez is the mother of JV Ejercito.

Juan Miguel “Mikey” Arroyo, son of former president and now House Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, has served twice as congressman. He is again running for Pampanga 2nd District representative in 2019.

Arroyo’s other son, Diosdado “Dado” Arroyo, served two terms in Congress as Camarines Sur district representative.

But Sara and Paolo had served in local positions in Davao City even before their father’s presidency. Sara had been mayor and vice mayor, while Paolo had been vice mayor, councilor, and barangay captain. – Rappler.com

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Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada is a senior reporter for Rappler covering Philippine politics and environmental issues. For tips and story suggestions, email her at pia.ranada@rappler.com.