The Philippines: Isko wants Duterte in his Senate slate

  • Aksyon Demokratiko standard-bearer and Manila City Mayor Isko Moreno said he would welcome President Rodrigo Duterte into his Senate slate with open arms, months after the tensions first flared between the two.
  • “I will personally vote for President Duterte for senator. And I will be grateful, honored, and humbled to have somebody like the president in our slate as an additional candidate for senator,” Moreno said during an ambush interview in Lapu-Lapu City.
  • Asked why he would want Duterte in his senatorial slate, Moreno explained that as president, Duterte had many accomplishments, including his administration’s flagship infrastructure project Build, Build, Build.
  • Moreno has long positioned himself as a moderate and has denied being a secret administration candidate.
  • Moreno had previously been supportive of the administration’s programs and policies, including its “war on drugs” and dolomite white sand beach in Manila Bay. However, he has also been a vocal critic of the administration’s face shield rule in the city of Manila.
  • Aksyon Demokratiko itself admitted earlier that the party “had 4,000 more or less candidates jumping ship from different political parties nationwide.”
  • In a statement issued later, Aksyon Demokratiko chairperson Ernest Ramil said that the party stood behind its standard-bearer’s pronouncement as it was never an opposition party.
  • “Aksyon has taken a centrist and objective stand on many issues and is not an opposition party per se,” he said.

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