2016 Philippine elections

Who’s who in Duterte’s poll contributors list

Michael Bueza

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Who’s who in Duterte’s poll contributors list
Here's a quick look at the donors who helped fund Duterte’s successful presidential bid

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MANILA, Philippines – During the 2016 election campaign, then-Davao City mayor Rodrigo Duterte tried to be cheeky when asked who was funding his presidential bid. He simply said: Emilio Aguinaldo.

His spokesman later said “Emilio Aguinaldo” represented the ordinary Filipinos contributing to Duterte’s campaign, supposedly run on a shoestring budget.

As it turned out, President Duterte used up P371,461,480.23 of the P375,009,474.90 in contributions that he received, according to his Statement of Contributions and Expenditures (SOCE) submitted to the Commission on Elections. He was the 4th top spender of the 5 presidential candidates.

Most of the contributions Duterte received for his campaign came from big businessmen – one of whom is even on the Forbes list of 50 richest Filipinos, according to a report by the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism.

Here’s a quick look at the donors who helped fund Duterte’s successful presidential bid. 

Biggest, smallest contributions

Duterte received the largest contribution from Antonio “Tonyboy” Floirendo Jr, representative of the 2nd district of Davao del Norte and son of the late banana magnate Antonio Floirendo Sr.

Floirendo Jr contributed a total of P75 million to Duterte’s campaign. 

The smallest cash contribution for Duterte’s campaign was P1,200, while his smallest in-kind contribution was worth P576.


Many of his biggest contributors were businessmen, mostly from Davao City and Manila.

Davao businessmen Lorenzo Te, Dennis A. Uy, and Samuel Uy donated P30 million each to Duterte’s campaign.

Te is the president of Honda Cars Davao Inc and Honda Cars General Santos Inc, based on latest available records from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Dennis A. Uy is the president of independent oil company Phoenix Petroleum Philippines. The company’s chairman Domingo T. Uy, gave an additional P5 million while one of its directors, Cherrylyn C. Uy, contributed P1 million. 

Samuel Uy owns Davao Farms Corporation, involved in the egg and poultry industry, and is a stockholder in DIMDI Centre Inc and DIMDI Builders Center Inc. Both companies are in the general merchandising business. DIMDI stands for Davao Import Distributors Incorporated.

JAPAN TRIP. Businessman Samuel Uy shakes hands with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the sidelines of President Duterte's official visit to Japan last October. Photo from Uy's Facebook page
JAPAN TRIP. Businessman Samuel Uy shakes hands with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the sidelines of President Duterte’s official visit to Japan last October. Photo from Uy’s Facebook page

Samuel Uy accompanied President Duterte in his trip to Japan last October and was seen with Duterte and Abe. 

Nicasio Alcantara, president of the Alcantara Group of Companies and former chairman of Petron Corporation, gave P18 million.

His brother, Tomas Alcantara of independent power producer Alsons Consolidated Resources Inc, gave another P12 million. He was ranked #41 in Forbes Magazine’s Philippines 50 Richest List in 2016.

Marcelino Mendoza, chief operating officer of MGS Corporation and former president and chairman of Vista Land, contributed P14.5 million. Michael Regino, president of Agata Mining Ventures and San Agustin Mining Services, gave P14 million.

Felix Ang, who donated P10 million, is the owner of car dealer CATS Motors Inc.

Other major contributors include Bienvenido F. Tan with P20 million and Patricia Escaler with P5 million, both from Makati City.

When Duterte was still contemplating a presidential bid before the filing of certificates of candidacy last year, a group of anonymous businessmen volunteered to help him raise campaign funds.

The group called Anonymous Patriots for a Peaceful and Progressive Philippines (AP4) pledged to raise P1 billion for Duterte’s campaign. These businessmen supposedly did “not want any publicity or recognition” and were “merely showing their support” for Duterte.

AP4’s membership has not yet been disclosed or revealed. The name of Benigno Gopez, a former waiter turned successful entrepreneur who spoke for the group, does not appear in Duterte’s SOCE.

Cabinet appointees 

Carlos Dominguez III, who donated P3 million, is now the finance secretary in Duterte’s Cabinet.

Salvador Medialdea, who gave P500,000, is Duterte’s executive secretary. His wife, Ma. Bertola, donated another P1 million.

Ismael Sueno, with an in-kind contribution of sound system rental worth P21,600, has been appointed Duterte’s interior secretary.

Top locations

Based on the addresses declared on Duterte’s SOCE, here are the top 5 sources of Duterte’s campaign funds by location:

LocationCash +
Total Amount
(in pesos)
Davao City189,042,200.00
Metro Manila107,165,000.00

In-kind contributions 

Duterte received P76.7 million in in-kind contributions, but the bulk of these were political tandem ads. 

His running mate, Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, donated a total of P71.3 million for tandem ads, while senatorial bet Francis Tolentino donated P3.1 million for the same purpose. 

The remaining amount, P2.2 million, were in-kind contributions from 56 donors, mostly for rental of venues and equipment for Duterte’s campaign sorties nationwide. 

Among these in-kind contributors were:

  • Angel Mae Tan of Cebu City, with P290,000 worth of in-kind donations, the biggest amount outside of tandem ads
  • Duterte’s sister, Eleanore Duterte – P70,000
  • Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) founding chairman Dante Jimenez – P30,000
  • Former South Cotabato governor and now Interior Secretary Ismael Sueno – P21,600
  • Former Caloocan City congresswoman Mary Mitzi Cajayon – P15,000

See the full list of contributors to Duterte’s 2016 election campaign here.

with Katerina Francisco/Rappler.com

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Michael Bueza

Michael is a data curator under Rappler's Tech Team. He works on data about elections, governance, and the budget. He also follows the Philippine pro wrestling scene and the WWE. Michael is also part of the Laffler Talk podcast trio.