DAVAO CITY—Mayor Sara Duterte on Thursday recounted the favors that some Liberal Party senators asked from her and her father, President Rodrigo Duterte, when he was still mayor of Davao City.
She recounted instances when Senators Francis Pangilinan, Risa Hontiveros and Antontio Trillanes IV went all the way to Davao City to ask the help of the Dutertes to win votes in Davao.
She recalled the words of Pangilinan when he asked for Duterte’s support for his presidential ambitions.
“Kiko Pangilinan, several years ago I saw you here in Davao at a golf club, and you went to my father,” she said in Filipino on her social media account. “You wanted to run for president. What did you say? ‘With Sharon’s endorsement and your [Duterte’s] endorsement, I’m sure I can make it.’ In the past you sought his endorsement, but now you do a Hunger Games salute.”
She recalled that during the 2016 presidential election, Hontiveros called her several times to ask for help for her vote in the Davao City.
She also said that even from the start she never liked Trillanes and even declined the latter’s request to meet her in Davao City some years ago.
She also recalled that he asked Duterte to help in his vice presidential campaign run.
The Davao City mayor said somebody needed to speak out to let the people know the truth about the Liberal Party politicians.
Responding to Sara Duterte’s rant, Trillanes said he sought the help of her father because he did not know at the time he was a killer and a thief.
“It’s different now. I already know the truth,” he said.
But when Trillanes sought Duterte’s help in 2016, the mayor had already been investigated for alleged summary executions in Davao City.
The investigation was led by detained Senator Leila de Lima, who was then chairman of the Commission on Human Rights. She continued the investigation even during her stint as Justice secretary under the administration of President Benigno Aquino III in 2010.
But De Lima, currently detained at the PNP Custodian Center in Camp Crame, failed to file any charges against Duterte for murder.
Reacting to Sara’s tirades posted on Facebook, Hontiveros said she is “saddened” especially since they have had “several friendly interactions” over the years.
“I am grateful for her support during my election campaign and I have honored that support by defending women’s and gender rights, health, human rights, and our country’s democracy.”
From the very beginning, Hontiveros said Sara knows where she stands on the issues of human rights and the extrajudicial killings that have been happening in the country.
“I have been consistent in this regard. My stand on the war on drugs and my current criticisms of the administration should come as no surprise,” the senator said.
“Dissent is healthy in a democracy. It serves a check and balance to abuse of power and a way to better governance. It should never be viewed as a hindrance,” Hontiveros added.
“I harbor the Mayor no ill will and I wish her well. But this is not a question of loyalty. This is a matter of service, of consistency and of principle, and the defense of the rule of law and human rights. I am sure, as a fellow public servant, she understands that,” she added. With Macon Ramos-Araneta
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