DAVAO CITY, Davao del Sur, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte has admitted that political dynasties are bad for the country but, according to him, the fault lies with Filipino voters who continue to elect local dynasties.
"[I am embarrassed because] people continue to repeat that phrase about dynasties, "the president said Friday during the swearing-in ceremony of his youngest son, Sebastian, who ran unopposed success to the deputy mayor of Davao City in the last election.
In addition to Sebastian, his daughter Sara was also re-elected mayor of the city of Davao, while his other son, Paolo, was elected representative of the first district of Davao City.
The president admitted that political parties are not good for the country, but voters continue to elect dynasties in various parts of the country.
Article II of the 1987 Constitution states in Section 26: "The State shall guarantee equal access to public service opportunities and shall prohibit political dynasties as defined by law."
"That's really true. It really is not good if everyone belongs to just one family for many years. The problem is the people, "he said.
The president recalled that when he decided not to run for mayor, the leaders of the city of Davao and members of his local party Hugpong ng Pagbabago (PNH) called for his daughter Sara to replace him.
The same situation happened with Paolo and then Sebastian, the president said.
"I told them I was not going to run for mayor anymore. But they wanted Inday, "he said.
"I will respect the wishes of my party" because [it] and the party [that] will support me during the election. They are the ones who want this.
Although he is ashamed that all three of his adult children are in public office, Duterte said he could not stop a Duterte from seeking public office, not even the presidency.
Dutertes will win again
"If a Duterte still runs, I'm sure that if the name is not destroyed, he or she will surely win," he said.
The president said he had told his daughter that if the HNP decided to choose another candidate to "give others the chance," she should follow the party's decision.
Give others a chance
"If she realizes we need to give others a chance. Maybe after that, if my daughter Inday decides, (I'll tell her) "let's give the others a chance," he said.
Sara has been praised by her supporters as a potential presidential candidate in 2022, with her political stock boosted by victories in the recently concluded May elections.
Sara has publicly said she has no intention of running for president, despite the repeated insistence of HNP leaders.
The president also repeatedly said that it was against his daughter's presidential candidate after his term ends in 2022.
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