DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio hinted she could run for a seat in Congress, the latest u-turn to an earlier statement where she had ditched such a plan.
Speaking to reporters on Friday, February 23, the city mayor said, "I will not run for senator, so it’s just city mayor or congressman.”
She added, “everything is up in the air right now.”
The latest twist in Davao’s political world came after she took to her social media accounts her ire against Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, who reportedly accused her that she was acting alone by mounting Hugpong Ng Pagbabago (HNP).
Duterte-Carpio said Alvarez had accused her that by setting up HNP she would become part of the opposition.
But she belied the accusation, saying HNP – which borrowed its name from her father’s party – received a blessing from the President.
“I understand they have a problem in Davao del Norte but what I don’t understand is why he had to attack me and Davao City,” she said of Alvarez.
The mayor made no mention of this plan on Friday, as she said HNP will focus on Davao region’s affairs. (READ: Davao governors bolt parties to join Sara Duterte’s Hugpong)
Fielding Duterte-Carpio as candidate for Davao City’s 1st congressional district, though, could open the possibility she would eventually replace Alvarez.
Tension between Duterte-Carpio and her father’s political ally became apparent in the recent days when the mayor called out the official for allegedly brandishing her as part of the opposition.
In January, she said she had no plans run as congressman because she wanted to preside over the completion of government projects in the city.
Davao City has long been led by the Dutertes, with the President winning every local elections since his appointment as mayor after the EDSA revolution.
The new party
Friday's unveiling of the new regional party also swore in hundreds of mayors across towns in Davao Region, once a single province after the dissolution of the Moro Province in 1914.
The region is home to 5 provinces, 6 cities, and at least 43 municipalities – with a population of more than 4.5 million as of 2010.
With the Hugpong Ng Pagbabago, Duterte-Carpio said they expect to recruit more members into the organization. It aims to throw support to President Duterte's development agenda at the regional level.
The party has two officers, Anthony Del Rosario and Jayvee Tyron Uy, holding strategic positions in the region's socioeconomic planning efforts.
Del Rosario is chair of the Regional Development Council XI which prepared a roadmap of P787-billion priority projects to be implemented in 2017-2022. Meanwhile, Uy leads the Regional Peace and Order Council XI. – Rappler.com