-- Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. (right) presses hands with admirers during his speaking engagement at the Unibersidad de Manila on Wednesday. Marcos is touring universities to talk about the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), which his committee handles in the Senate. (MNS photo)

— Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. (right) presses hands with admirers during his speaking engagement at the Unibersidad de Manila on Wednesday. Marcos is touring universities to talk about the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), which his committee handles in the Senate. (MNS photo)

MANILA  (Mabuhay) – Mimicking a move by vice presidential candidate Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. also trooped to Davao City to meet with Mayor Rodrigo Duterte Wednesday night.

Marcos, who is rumored to be running for higher office in 2016, sat down to a two-hour meeting with Duterte, who is being pushed by supporters to aim for the presidency.

In an interview after the closed door meeting, Marcos admitted that talks with Duterte centered on politics but not necessarily about the coming electoral race.

“[It was] not really a meeting.. Nag-usap-usap lang kami. Obviously, politics ang pinag-usapan namin. It was a general discussion,” Marcos said.

The senator added that he had asked advice from Duterte regarding his own political plans.

“Actually I just came here to ask mayor’s advice on what I can do dahil siyempre palapit na tayo sa filing [of certificate of candidacy]. Many of these decisions, I have to make already. I have always sought his political advice for many years already, and this is a continuation of that,” Marcos said.

Asked if a possible tandem with Duterte was included in their talks, Marcos said: “We discussed that a long time ago, not tonight. We didn’t talk about that tonight. We talked about everything tonight, in and around politics.”

Duterte, meanwhile, confirmed that he lent advice to the younger politician, particularly on “what areas Bongbong would need to concentrate on.”

“I promised Senator Marcos to get in touch with him… We’re about to cross the Rubicon, ika nga,” Duterte added, referring to an idiom for passing a point of no return.

The mayor earlier met with Senator Alan Peter Cayetano who proclaimed Tuesday his intent to run for vice president. Cayetano said he is backing calls for Duterte to run for president in 2016, stressing that the country needs a real leader.

After “categorically” ruling out a bid for president, Duterte said over the weekend that he needs more time to do some “soul-searching.” He later clarified that his statement was taken out of context.

In the interview after meeting with Marcos, however, Duterte stressed that other than death, nothing else can be considered final.

“The only final thing in this planet is death. If you are alive, everything is possible. Sabi ko, ito namang politika, I said, destiny is crafted by God, not by the personal ambitions of the mortals here nor of events. If He will decide for you… that would be final,” the mayor said.

Duterte added that the deadline for filing of certificates of candidacy won’t be until October 16.

He then said, “I might run for mayor again. I might run for senator. I might run for ah… gusto n’yo marinig?”

Duterte also dispelled rumors that he will announce his presidential bid on Friday. “Sino namang may pakana n’yan?” he said, deadpan.

Duterte, ranked fourth in the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) and Pulse Asia surveys, behind Senator Grace Poe, former Interior Secretary Mar Roxas, and Vice President Jejomar Binay,

A group of businessmen has pledged P1 billion to fund Duterte’s presidential campaign. (MNS)