President Rodrigo R. Duterte

MANILA, Apr 2 (Mabuhay) — President Rodrigo R. Duterte has vouched for the competence of his daughter, vice presidential candidate and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, in serving the country.

During the campaign sortie of his ruling political party Partido Demokratiko Pilipino – Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) in Lapu-Lapu City on Thursday night, Duterte told the mammoth crowd that while he is about to step down from office in June, his daughter would continue his legacy if she gets elected as vice president.

Despite his acknowledgment of his apparent differences with his daughter, the President wooed the electorate in vote-rich Cebu by telling them that Sara is “very good” and “very hardworking”.

“Ang akong – ang ako, ako retired. Akong anak modaga’g bise-presidente. Og inyong tan-aw nga… Actually, this is the first time nga gigamit nako ang akong pagka-amahan nga – sa anak. Nagkuan ko eh, nakaagi’g samok. Pero anak is anak is anak. So… Pero maayo na si Inday, sa tinuod lang. Basta trabaho lang tinarong, maayo na si Inday (I’m going to retire but my daughter is running for vice president. If you think that… Actually, this is the first time that I’m using my name as a father, for my daughter. It’s because we’ve had issues, but she is my daughter. So… Inday is very good, to be totally honest with you. Inday is very hard-working),” he said.

Duterte said Sara, given her qualities and leadership style, would be a great fit for the vice presidency.

“Si Inday karon medyo istrikto gyud. Di ka pwedeng magtapok, kanang usa-usa ra gyud mong tawgon, pero makig-istorya ninyo. Unya sa trabaho istrikto kaayo. Magkinto gud nang – magkinto – pangutan-ang taga-Davao, magkinto na sila. Basta maayo man pud, maayo man pud na para masilbihan gyud tanan unya walay kaguliyang ba (But Inday is really very strict. You can’t crowd around waiting for her, you will be called one by one instead. But she will talk to you. And that’s good, that’s actually good. She can serve people in an orderly manner),” he said.

Duterte earlier expressed displeasure over Sara’s decision to run for vice president under the Lakas – Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD) despite mounting calls for her to gun for the presidency.

He also blamed Sara’s running mate, presidential aspirant Ferdinand Marcos Jr., for allegedly influencing his daughter to seek the vice presidency instead of the top government post.

Despite this, Duterte, in a taped video message played at an event in Cebu City on March 19, advised Sara to “be true to (the) country” and “work hard for the people.”

While he expressed support for Sara’s vice presidential bid, Duterte maintained that he would not endorse any presidential candidate as he opted to stay “neutral”.

The President made the statement despite his recent meeting with Marcos that prompted the PDP-Laban to support the presidential hopeful’s candidacy. (MNS)

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