Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said that he’ll run for vice-president in next year’s elections, confirming his ambition to remain within the top echelons of power for several more years.
The announcement came ahead of the party’s national convention on Sep 8, where it is also expected to endorse Duterte’s aide and incumbent senator Christopher “Bong” Go to be its presidential candidate in the 2022 polls.
“I will continue the crusade. I’m worried about the drugs, insurgency,” Duterte said in a briefing aired late Tuesday. “I may not have the power to give the direction or guidance, but I can always express my views in public.”
As per the Philippine Constitution, a president can only be elected for one six-year term. In the Philippines, the president is elected separately from the vice president.
Duterte is employing the same tactics as he did during the 2016 race, which he entered as a substitute candidate.
Opinion polls show Duterte remains hugely popular, despite his bloody anti-drugs campaign and criticism of the pandemic response, but analysts say his popularity would not necessarily rub off on Go.
Go has been the 76-year-old president’s closest aide since the late 1990s, when Duterte was a congressman representing his hometown Davao City.