Duterte confirms daughter Sara running for presidency

President Rodrigo Duterte and his daughter Sara Duterte-Carpio

President Rodrigo Duterte and his daughter Sara Duterte-Carpio

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s daughter, Sara Duterte-Carpo would run for president in next year’s election.

Her running mate will be Senator Christopher “Bong” Go, her father’s long-time aide, who filed his vice presidential candidacy on Saturday, accompanied by her father.

Broadcasting firm ABS-CBN confirmed the news late on Saturday, based on an interview that Duterte had with a broadcast journalist right after he announced that he was retiring from politics.

He was asked: “So is it clear, Sara-Go?”

“It is Sara-Go,” Duterte said in response.

Sara Duterte-Carpio is currently mayor of Davao, the Philippines’ third-largest city, and filed on Saturday to run for mayor again.

She has previously said she would not run for national office next year.

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In the same interview witha journalsit, Duterte was asked when his daughter would file her candidacy for president, he said: “I really do not know. I do not have any idea at all”.

Asked if he had given his daughter permission to run for president, he said: “Ah, no, actually we don’t talk about politics, ever since we never talk about politics. I would say that it is for the better,” Duterte was quoted as saying.

Duterte, 76, said on Saturday he was retiring from politics, a surprise move that fuelled speculation he was clearing the way for a presidential run by his daughter.

He had been expected to run for the No. 2 job, a plan most Filipinos oppose as violating the spirit of the constitution which sets a one-term limit for the president to stop power being abused.

Political analysts were sceptical, noting that last-minute changes were still possible, as in 2015 when Duterte entered the presidential election race at the eleventh hour and won by a huge margin, and Duterte-Carpio, they said, could do the same.

Candidates have until Oct. 8 to register, but withdrawals and substitutions are allowed until Nov. 15, leaving scope for last-minute changes of heart.

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