Presidential allies urged to focus on Covid-19 pandemic, not politics

·2 min read

A VETERAN human rights lawyer found it “highly irresponsible and insensitive” for the public officials who are allies of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino (PDP)–Lakas ng Bayan to talk about politics amid the coronavirus pandemic.

This, after some members of the PDP-Laban, including local officials in Cebu, joined the call urging President Rodrigo Duterte to run for Vice President in next year’s national and local elections.

Democrito Barcenas said now is the not the right time to talk about politics when the public is suffering the effects brought about by the health crisis.

Barcenas also described the officials involved in the movement as “sipsip,” or brown-nosers.

“This PDP-Laban and these ‘sipsip’ mayors are highly irresponsible and insensitive in talking about politics in the face of national misery caused by the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Barcenas in an interview with SunStar Cebu.

Former Cebu City mayor Tomas Osmeña shared Barcenas’ sentiments.

His one-word text reply to SunStar Cebu’s query on what he thought of the latest development was also the word “sipsip.”

Retired judge Meinrado Paredes was more pragmatic, saying no one can stop Duterte if he decides to run for Vice President, whether endorsed or not.

Should Duterte heed the call of his allies, whoever wins the presidential seat, Duterte “will lord it over as President,” said Paredes.

“He needs a puppet to avoid prosecution,” said Paredes.

In a previous report, Presidential Assistant for the Visayas Michael Lloyd Dino, as well as PDP-Laban Cebu Provincial President Nixon “Jojo” Dizon, said that should the President act on their call, the party will let him choose his running mate.

Duterte previously hinted that Sen. Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go might go after the country’s highest government post after the former addressed Go as “president” during a meeting in Cagayan de Oro City. Duterte also bared Go’s presidential dream.

In the past months, there have also been movements urging Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, the President’s daughter, to run for President.

Go, for his part, denied having any presidential ambition. As for the prospect of the presidential daughter becoming the next chief executive, Duterte has advised her against running, claiming “women are not fit for the top government post.” (JJL)