The Philippines: Mark Villar joins Marcos-Duterte Senate slate

  • Former public works chief Mark Villar has joined the 2022 Senate slate of presidential aspirant Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio.
  • Villar, who spoke ahead of Marcos and Duterte, spoke glowingly of the late dictator’s son and namesake but did not categorically endorse his presidential candidacy.
  • He also failed to acknowledge the presence of Duterte.
  • Villar’s mother and Nacionalista Party chairperson, Sen. Cynthia Villar, was also present at the event and even shared the stage with Marcos, Duterte, former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and other politicians aligned with the tandem.
  • It is not yet clear whether the NP will formally support the Marcos-Duterte tandem and join the alliance of political parties backed by political clans supporting the duo.
  • But it would not be the first time that the NP will support a Marcos for the presidency, as it backed Bongbong’s father when he ran for president in 1965 and 1969.
  • The NP later on supported Marcos’ nemesis, Corazon Aquino, in the 1986 snap elections.
  • President Rodrigo Duterte had endorsed the younger Villar for senator, along with a slew of other Senate bets for 2022’s polls, on the last day of filing of candidacies before the Commission on Elections.
  • The faction in the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino – Lakas ng Bayan backed by Duterte has not yet released a list of its senatorial candidates, although it did come up with a tentative list of its bets for the upper chamber which include Villar, Deputy Speaker Rodante Marcoleta and former presidential spokesperson Harry Roque, who have all been seen in events with the Marcos-Duterte tandem.

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