Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio on Saturday morning met with presidential aspirant and former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. in Cebu City amid both speculations and clamor for her to eventually join the presidential race for the 2022 polls.
Duterte-Carpio and Marcos are two political personalities being urged to run as running mates in next year’s elections.
The President’s daughter said, however, that she only crossed paths with Marcos during the birthday celebration of Tingog Partylist Rep. Yedda Romualdez, who is the wife of House Majority Leader and Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez.
“Confirmed po na nagkita kami ngayon ni presidential aspirant at former Senator BBM sa masayang pagdiriwang ng birthday ni Cong. Yedda, maybahay ni House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez sa Cebu (Yes, we met Presidential aspirant and former senator BBM at the birthday celebration of Cong. Yedda, wife of House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez in Cebu)” she wrote in a social media post.
Martin Romualdez and Bongbong are cousins. Martin’s father, the late Former US Ambassador and Leyte Governor Benjamin “Kokoy” Romualdez, is the younger brother of Bongbong’s mother, former Ilocos Norte’s 2nd district Rep. Imelda Romualdez Marcos.
When asked by reporters whether or not the two planned to meet in the city, Lawyer Vic Rodriguez — campaign manager of Bongbong — said it was just “another beautiful coincidence.”
Prior to their meeting, Duterte-Carpio also met Bongbong’s sister, Senator Imee Marcos, and thanked her for the visit and “constant support.” The senator had dubbed their possible tandem as a “marriage made in heaven.”
Both Duterte-Carpio and Bongbong Marcos arrived in the vote-rich province on Friday.
While Duterte-Carpio has yet to fully disclose the purpose of her visit to the city, Marcos traveled here to lead the inauguration of his campaign headquarters on Friday morning.
In the afternoon, Marcos paid a visit to Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia at the Capitol and her son-in-law, Cebu 5th District Rep. Duke Frasco.
Duke Frasco is the husband of Liloan Mayor Christina Frasco, who is Duterte-Carpio’s spokesperson.
In July, Duterte-Carpio flew to the city to consult Garcia. She said she went there to ask Cebuanos “what they really like” amid the strong clamor for her to seek the presidency.
Following her meeting with Garcia, she admitted that she is finally “open” to running for president during a chance interview with the local media.
During the 2016 presidential elections, at least 1.1 million Cebuanos voted for then-Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte — an outcome perceived as the result of the endorsement of One Cebu Party, which is led by Garcia.
With at least three million votes, Cebu is considered the country’s most vote-rich province.
Duterte-Carpio and Marcos were being urged by their allies to partner for the next year’s polls, believing that their tandem would unify votes from the North and the South.
Duterte-Carpio had just recovered from Covid-19. She tested positive for the disease days after she filed her Certificate of Candidacy (CoC) for reelection.
Despite filing her CoC for a local post, her supporters continue to appeal for Duterte-Carpio to run for president through substitution until 15 November before the Commission on Elections.
At least two political parties such as Romualdez’s Lakas-CMD and the late former Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago’s People’s Reform Party have opened their doors for Duterte-Carpio’s possible Palace run.
To date, Marcos has not selected his running mate and finalized his senatorial slate yet.
Meanwhile, a big group of supporters of Duterte-Carpio staged a motorcade Saturday morning to urge her to run for a national post next year.
The group assembled at the Cultural Center compound parking lot starting at 6 before moving to Roxas Boulevard and proceeded to Burgos Drive, Rizal Avenue, Monumento EDSA then back to Roxas Boulevard.
In an interview, former actress Vivian Velez, a council member of the “Sara All” group, bared that the event ushers more activities in their efforts to make Mayor Sara run for a national post.
“We would like to ask Mayor Sara to please hear the voice of the people for you to run as president this coming election as we know you can do a lot more in continuing what President Rody had started and we are confident that majority of the Filipino people will vote for you.
Around 700 different groups supporting Mayor Duterte aim to join forces to urge Duterte-Carpio to change her mind.
It will be recalled that the President’s daughter earlier filed for reelection as Davao City Mayor.
With Pat Santos