2022 Philippine Elections

[In the Running] Day 2: COC filing heats up as Go runs for VP, Duterte retires from politics

Bonz Magsambol
[In the Running] Day 2: COC filing heats up as Go runs for VP, Duterte retires from politics

RETIRING? President Rodrigo Duterte takes the podium to endorse Sen. Bong Go who filed his COC for vice president at the Sofitel Hotel in Pasay City on October 2, 2021.

Angie de Silva/Rappler

Here are the highlights of the day 2 of COC filing for the 2022 elections

‘In the Running’ is Rappler’s daily wrap of the filing of candidacies for the 2022 elections, with senior reporter Pia Ranada, regional coordinator Inday Espina-Varona, and reporters in the field. This article is based on the show’s October 2 episode about Day 2 of COC filing.

What started as a slow day at the filing of the certificates of candidacy (COCs) for the 2022 elections on Saturday, October 2, turned into one full of unexpected developments.

Two hours before the day 2 of the filing closed, Presidential aide-turned-senator Bong Go filed his COC for the vice presidential race. It was a move that surprised the public because he was expected to run for president.

The PDP-Laban faction led by President Rodrigo Duterte and Energy Secretary Cusi had earlier nominated Go as its standard bearer on September 8. Go initially declined the party’s nomination, saying that he would rather focus his energy on his work at the Senate.

Watch the full episode below.

But for Rappler’s regional head Inday Espina Varona, Go’s move could only be his party’s political strategy.

“Remember, [in] 2015, that’s exactly what happened. It was Martin Diño who filed for the PDP-Laban for the presidency, and actually, then-Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte filed his COC for a last term in Davao City, and we all know, everything else is history,” Varona said.

Also on the same day, Duterte’s daughter Sara Duterte filed her COC for reelection as mayor of Davao City. She is seeking her third and last consecutive term as Davao mayor. Sara is the top choice in the 2022 presidential race, according to a September Pulse Asia survey. 

The Duterte camp has a history of taking the public for a ride, when the President had repeatedly said in 2015 that he would not be running for the highest position in the country. But later on, he substituted for PDP Laban’s bet Martin Diño and won the presidency.

Varona said that a scenario could be that the late dictator’s son Bongbong will substitute for Go or Sara Duterte will vie for the presidency and Marcos as his vice president. “Whether he becomes president or vice president is a question still up in the air, but do you imagine Mayor Sara Duterte playing second to Bongbong Marcos?” she asked.

Rappler’s Malacañang reporter Pia Ranada said that given Sara Duterte’s survey numbers, it’s not likely the case. “She is placing higher than him and obviously she has her own mind too,” she said.

“But as we also know, Sara is her own person, it’s not like she can just be commanded by her father. Personally, I think they’re still waiting and hoping for Sara to run for president,” Ranada added.

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The Marcos camp has been on radio silence since the deposed dictator’s appeared on Friday News Forum last September 24. The Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (KBL) nominated him as party standard-bearer in 2022 on the same day.

Duterte ‘done’ with politics?

Another unexpected announcement that happened on Saturday was Duterte’s retirement from politics.

The 76-year-old President said that he took note of the “overwhelming sentiment” of Filipinos that running for vice president would “circumvent” the law.

He was apparently referring to a recent survey by the Social Weather Stations that showed six in 10 Filipinos believe that Duterte’s contemplated vice presidential run is unconstitutional.

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But this was not the first time he talked about retirement from politics. In 2015, when asked if he would consider running for president, Duterte said that he “will retire from public life for good.” Then, the rest is history.

JV Ejercito’s comeback, Raffy Tulfo’s senatorial bid

Former senator JV Ejercito wants to return to Congress. He filed his COC for senator on Saturday. Ejercito said he hesitated to seek reelection because he wasn’t ready to run for a national position twice. There are also a lot of reelectionists, he said, including his brother Jinggoy Estrada.

Rappler’s Jairo Bolledo, who was able to interview Ejercito, said that the aspirant this time would want to use Estrada in his campaign. Varona, however, said that this would confuse voters later on because there would be two Estradas in the senatorial race.

“Saka hindi naglalagay ng first name ang mga tao, di ba, apelyido usually. So hindi ko alam yung gagawin nila,” Varona said. (And voters dont’t usually write first name in the ballots, surname usually. So, I don’t know how are they going to resolve that.)

After topping the latest Pulse Asia pre-election survey for preferred senatorial candidates, broadcaster Raffy Tulfo has moved to make his Senate bid official.

Tulfo is known for his radio show Wanted sa Radyo and TV program Idol in Action, which are both aired by the TV5 network. His brand of “justice”, however, has been widely criticized as he was allegedly disregarded due process.

“[People] would call, you know, pour their hearts out, and the role of Noli de Castro and especially the Tulfo brothers, Raffy, is to solve their problem,” Varona said.

“I’d like to, you know, people call it instant gratification but I’d like to put some context there because we are a very unjust society and our legal, our normal processes are really skewed, for, against the poor, the weak, and those who do not have power,” she added. – Rappler.com

Watch ‘In the Running’ at 7 pm from October 1 to 8, on Rappler’s YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter channels. The recorded version of the show is available right after its live airing.

Watch In the Running October 1 episode here.

Bonz Magsambol

Bonz Magsambol is a multimedia reporter for Rappler, covering health, education, and social welfare. He first joined Rappler as a social media producer in 2016.