Liza Araneta-Marcos

It all started with ‘bangag’: How rift between Liza Marcos, Sara Duterte began

Dwight de Leon

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

It all started with ‘bangag’: How rift between Liza Marcos, Sara Duterte began

Photos by Eloisa Lopez and Angie de Silva/Rappler; Graphics by David Castuciano/Rappler

First Lady Liza Marcos draws the line on former president Duterte accusing her husband Marcos Jr. of being under the influence, saying she did not like how Vice President Sara supposedly laughed at that comment

This ongoing telenovela in Philippine politics has a new episode after First Lady Liza Araneta Marcos broke her silence to attack Vice President Sara Duterte in a revealing, no-holds-barred interview with broadcaster Anthony Taberna.

“She crossed the line,” she said in the YouTube video uploaded in the wee hours of Friday, April 19.

The rift began after Sara attended a protest in Davao against charter change in January. In a rally that saw former president Rodrigo Duterte accuse his successor Ferdinand Marcos Jr. of drug use, the First Lady couldn’t take it anymore.

At one point during that rally, Mr. Duterte rambled onstage, saying: “Si Bongbong, bangag ‘yan (Bongbong is high on drugs).”

According to Liza, she saw the Vice President laugh at her father’s jab in one of the video feeds, a response that did not sit well with her. (It is unclear if Sara indeed laughed during that exact moment, as the professional livestream from Rodrigo Duterte’s Facebook page did not pan to the Vice President.)

It all started with ‘bangag’: How rift between Liza Marcos, Sara Duterte began

“You are getting suweldo (salary) from the government, you are supposed to be the alter ego,” Liza said. “That’s not right. That’s entitled politics. You’re in the government. You’re the vice president. Bad shot na ‘yan sa akin (I already have a bone to pick with her), unless she says sorry. She crossed the line.”

Nasaktan ako, because my husband will do everything to protect you. You ran together, ‘di ba? Sama-sama tayong babangon muli. Pupunta ka sa rally, tatawagan iyong presidente mong bangag, you’re going to laugh. Tama ba ‘yun? Even Leni Robredo never did that,” she added.

(I was hurt, because my husband will do everything to protect you. You ran together, right? Our motto was we would rise together. Then you will attend a rally where your president is being called high. Then you’re going to laugh. Is that right? Even Leni never did that.)

The tensions between the First Lady and the second-in-command are not exactly surprising, as their body gestures in the past months have indicated a rough patch in their relationship.

During the departure ceremony for Marcos’ trip to Vietnam a few days after the Davao rally, Liza and Sara were seen ignoring each other despite being seated next to each other.

The two had also ignored or declined requests for comment on the status of their relationship since January.

The alliance between the Marcos and Duterte families resulted in a landslide victory in the 2022 elections, but maintaining that “marriage of convenience” – as some analysts call it – has been everything but easy.

Sara has feuded with the President’s cousin, Speaker Martin Romualdez, whose House of Representatives later denied Sara’s request for P650 million in confidential funds.

President Marcos also once said the government was studying the possibility of rejoining the International Criminal Court, which is investigating Mr. Duterte’s bloody drug war.

The former president accused Marcos of being part of a drug watch list; the incumbent chief executive fired back by saying the old man from Davao was suffering the longterm effects of continued use of fentanyl.

President Marcos has still defended Sara publicly, and shrugged off calls to remove her (she is concurrent education secretary) from his Cabinet.

When asked earlier this week about his relationship with the Duterte family, Mr. Marcos could only describe it like a Facebook status: “It’s complicated.”

It all started with ‘bangag’: How rift between Liza Marcos, Sara Duterte began


Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.

Summarize this article with AI

How does this make you feel?

Download the Rappler App!
Avatar photo


Dwight de Leon

Dwight de Leon is a multimedia reporter who covers President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the Malacañang, and the Commission on Elections for Rappler.