Mong Palatino

Blogging about the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific since 2004


@mongster is a Manila-based activist, former Philippine legislator, and blogger/analyst of Asia-Pacific affairs.

Written for The Diplomat

Opposition groups in the Philippines have joined forces in a bid to defeat the party or anointed successor of President Rodrigo Duterte.

The country’s presidential election is scheduled for May 9, 2022. Duterte is constitutionally barred from seeking a second term, but some of his supporters are urging him to run as vice president if his daughter, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, decides to seek the presidency. In recent months, “Run Sara Run” banners have sprouted across the country in public places, despite lockdown restrictions.

The opposition coalition is named 1Sambayan (One Nation/One People), which highlights the call for unity to defeat Duterte, who continues to enjoy high public trust ratings amid allegations that his government bungled its pandemic response.

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Rodrigo Duterte: From Philippine President to Senator?

Written for The Diplomat

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is being asked by his party to run for senator, a move that will certainly upend the 2022 elections.

Under the 1987 Constitution, the president can only serve a single six-year term, but this didn’t stop the PDP-Laban ruling party from nominating Duterte as its vice presidential candidate. However, some legal scholars have opined that Duterte is constitutionally barred from running even for vice president and warned that his candidacy could be questioned in the courts.

Citing a lack of public support and personal qualification, Duterte did not push through with his vice presidential candidacy and instead endorsed Senator Bong Go as vice president. Go is his former aide but continues to accompany him in public events even after becoming a senator in 2019.

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