By CNN Philippines Staff
President Rodrigo Duterte addressed the issue of political dynasties Thursday, after three of his children filed certificates of candidacy (COC) for the 2019 elections.
Speaking a tthe 44th Philippine Business Conference and Expo in Manila, the President said, “Ayoko ng dynasty, but we were forced… Usually, pag maumpisahan ng isa, tuluy-tuloy na yan kaso hingiin ng mga tao.”
[Translation: I do not want a dynasty, but we were forced… Usually, it continues after one starts and people ask for it.]
The President added, “That’s politics.”
Earlier, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte said while she and two of her siblings are running in 2019, it would still be up to voters to decide on their political fates.
“We really cannot deny that. Ang mga detractor, sasabihin ng mga opposition, na [Detractors, the opposition will say it’s a] political dynasty. Yes, it’s a political dynasty, but in a sense na we are submitting ourselves to elections, so it is still a democratic process,” she told local reporters on Wednesday.
Three of Duterte’s four children children – Sara, Paolo, and Sebastian – filed their COCs Wednesday.
Sara for mayor of Davao City, Paolo – or Polong – for Davao City First District representative, and Sebastian, “Baste” as he is more popularly known, as vice mayor.
Of the three, Duterte said his daughter was the most formidable.
For the first time, the President confirmed that it was Sara who moved to unseat Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez as House Speaker.
“Be careful of that woman. She can oust even a Speaker. She operated in Davao as mayor, tignan mo nangyari in Congress,” Duterte said.
The President went on to say he heard of the news from Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat.
“Sinabi daw ni Inday, nagkita sila sa washroom. ‘Tell my father I’m sorry.’ So, I did not know the implication. Wala akong…honest to God. Si Inday yun, gi-maneuver niya,” he said.
[Translation: Inday told her when they saw each other in the washroom. “Tell my father I am sorry.” So, I did not know the implication. I did not…honest to God. It was Inday, she maneuvered it.]
Duterte, however, said Alvarez is his friend.
In February, Inday Sara clashed with former House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez over supposed remarks against her and her father.
He was replaced by Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in July.
Three Dutertes in 2019 polls
The President also said he could not stop his eldest son from running for office.
Polong resigned on Christmas Day last year.
Of his youngest son, Duterte said Inday Sara may have forced him to run in 2019.
“Yung kapatid naman, ewan ko kung ano ang bakokang na kaso kay Inday. Pinilit niya itong ano ngayon, bunso, si Sebastian. Walang ginawa ‘yan sa buhay, mabuti meron na ngayon siguro kung i-vice mayor niya. Babae lang lahat,” he said.
[Translation: His sibling, I don’t know what happened with Inday. She forced the youngest, Sebastian. He has done nothing, maybe he will now if she gets him as vice mayor.]
In March, Duterte said he was all for an anti-political dynasty law if the people wanted it.