2022 PH presidential race

Bato dela Rosa withdraws presidential bid

Bea Cupin
Senator Ronald dela Rosa tells reporters that this is a 'party decision'

Senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa officially withdrew his candidacy for president on Saturday, November 13.

Dela Rosa himself went to the Commission on Elections (Comelec) office to withdraw his candidacy for president. He was supposed to be the standard-bearer of the Cusi-led faction in PDP-Laban in the 2022 polls.

In a chance interview with reporters at Comelec, Dela Rosa said it was a “party decision” for him to back out as presidential candidate.

“That it part of the decision of the party, to withdraw,” Dela Rosa told reporters before he filed his withdrawal.

Dela Rosa was the surprise and last-minute presidential bet of the PDP-Laban faction backed by President Rodrigo Duterte. The former national police chief only found out that he would be fielded for president two hours before the deadline for the filing of certificates of candidacy on October 8.

The first-term senator had always insisted that he was serious about gunning for the presidency but constantly made it a point to say that he was more than willing to slide down for an administration bet with better winnability. (WATCH: Bato dela Rosa as a placeholder? ‘Do I look like a mockery to you?’)

Dela Rosa on October 25 met with Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, in an apparent effort to convince her to take his place. While Dela Rosa refused to divulge the details of that meeting, he said he was “hopeful” Sara would still consider a presidential run.

Sara has since filed her candidacy as the vice presidential candidate of Lakas-CMD. She was also adopted by the party of presidential aspirant Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. as their vice presidential bet.

Dela Rosa is a member of the Philippine Military Academy Class of 1986 and was Duterte’s first choice to lead the Philippine National Police and the “war on drugs” – among Duterte’s core promises during the 2016 campaign.

Upon his retirement from the police force, Dela Rosa was appointed to the Bureau of Corrections before he ran for a Senate seat in 2019. Dela Rosa’s term ends in 2025. – Rappler.com

Bea Cupin

Bea is a journalist.