Hemming and hawing about what to do when his term ends in June 2022, President Rodrigo Duterte finally decided to file his candidacy for the Senate, the chamber he had been lambasting for months. He had been vacillating over two other choices — retirement or the vice presidency.
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Duterte chairs the fractious ruling party, Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban). Last Sept. 23, the party forged an alliance with Pederalismo ng Dugong Dakilang Samahan (PDDS) for the 2022 elections.
The ruling pro-Duterte faction of the PDP-Laban originally wanted the president to run as the vice-presidential (VP) running mate of his longtime aide-turned-senator Christopher “Bong” Go. Duterte, in fact, accepted the nomination on Sept. 22, according to Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, president of the party’s pro-Duterte faction.
The other faction is headed by Sen. Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao, also running for president in 2022 under the Progressive Movement for the Devolution of Initiatives or Probinsya Muna Development Initiative (Promdi), and Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel Jr.
Despite Duterte’s announcement of his retirement on Oct. 2, Cusi announced on Oct. 27 that his faction is urging the president to consider running for senator instead. Both Duterte and Go, who are top-ranking officials in PDP-Laban, are running under a different party, the PDDS, for senator and president, respectively.
This is not the first time Duterte pulled a surprise substitution. He flip-flopped on his candidacy in the 2016 presidential elections, initially turning down calls for him to run for president and eventually ended up substituting for Martin Dino, a former barangay chairman who turned out to be a placeholder of PDP-Laban for the then-mayor of Davao City.
Duterte has either offered or threatened to resign as president at least 22 times, as of the last count in July 2019, for various reasons, including being tired and in reaction to accusations of corruption and incompetence. (See VERA FILES FACT SHEET: Duterte’s thoughts of resignation)
Editor’s note: This article was updated to include the video fact-check.
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CNN Philippines reporter Melissa Lopez official Twitter account, LOOK: President Rodrigo Duterte’s COC as senatorial bet of PDDS , Nov. 15, 2021
Business World reporter, Samuel Medenilla, Comelec releases a copy of the COC of pres. Rodrigo Duterte. , Nov. 15, 2021
Rappler.com, official Twitter account, LOOK: Lawyer Mel Arana shows the certificate of candidacy (COC) of President Rodrigo Duterte,, Nov. 15, 2021
People’s Television, Pres. Duterte, substitute candidate sa pagka-senador sa Hatol ng Bayan 2022 sa ilalim ng PDDS, Nov. 15, 2021
Presidential Communications Operations Office, On PRRD’s latest announcement, Oct. 2, 2021
Social Weather Stations, Second Quarter 2021 Social Weather Survey: 60% of adult Filipinos say it violates the intention of the Constitution if President Duterte runs as Vice-President in 2022; only 39% say he should run, Sept. 27, 2021
RTVMalacanang, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s Talk to the People 10/4/2021, Oct. 4, 2021 (transcript)
People’s Television 4, #PTVBalitaNgayon | Nov. 13, 2021 / 4:40 p.m. update, Nov. 13, 2021
RTVMalacanang, Hugpong ng Pagbabago Thanksgiving Night 6/24/2019, June 25, 2019
Pederalismo ng Dugong Dakilang Samahan, PDP-Laban at PDDS na partidong pinamumunuan ni PACC Chief Greco Belgica… nag-alyansa na para sa 2022 election., Sept. 24, 2021
Inquirer.net, Duterte officially accepts PDP-Laban nomination to run for VP in 2022 polls, Sept. 23, 2021
CNN Philippines, Duterte signs CONA as VP bet, party mates still counting on Go, Sept. 23, 2021
ABS-CBN News, Duterte formally accepts PDP-Laban wing’s VP nomination, Sept. 23, 2021
Interaksyon.com, Sara Duterte files candidacy for VP —Comelec, Nov. 13, 2021
Philippine News Agency, Sara Duterte to run as VP in May 2022 polls, Nov. 13, 2021
Rappler.com, Sara Duterte to run for vice president under Lakas-CMD, Nov. 13, 2021
Presidential Communications Operations Office official Facebook page, PRRD’s Visit at the COMELEC Head Office City of Manila, Nov. 13, 2021
Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban), DU30 may run for Senate, act as campaign manager for BaGo tandem, Oct. 27, 2021
Pederalismo ng Dugong Dakilang Samahan, PAHAYAG NG PEDERALISMO NG DUGONG DAKILANG SAMAHAN (PDDS) SA PAGTAKBO SA HALALAN 2022 NINA PANG. RODRIGO DUTERTE AT SEN. BONG GO SA ILALIM NG PARTIDO, Nov. 15, 2021
ABS-CBN News, It’s official: Duterte files COC for president, Nov. 27, 2015
Philstar.com, It’s official: Duterte files COC for president But can he run?, Nov. 27, 2015
(Guided by the code of principles of the International Fact-Checking Network at Poynter, VERA Files tracks the false claims, flip-flops, misleading statements of public officials and figures, and debunks them with factual evidence. Find out more about this initiative and our methodology.)