Duterte still an enigma but stays very popular PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 27 March 2015 13:54

Like in other forums where Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte was asked if he is running for President, his  repartee when asked by DZMM’s Ted Failon was, “that’s a distant star”, “I do not want it” and “the Presidency does not appeal to me”.

But Duterte also says that he can make a supreme sacrifice if only to make the country intact.

Duterte also begs off from the presidential race because he no longer have the stamina to sustain the rigors of the campaign and to preside over the affairs of the government. However at 69, the city mayor climbs mountains in upper Calinan to hunt for wild boars, drives a taxi hunting for criminals up to the wee hours, presides over the Regional Peace and Order Council of which he is Chairman, makes the rounds all over the country peddling Federal System of government and makes time to address the needs of his political constituents.

These multi-tasks eloquently prove that in fact he is stronger than all the declared candidates for the  Presidency.

“Ibigay mo na lang sa kanila. Matanda na ako. I do not have the energy at mas maraming mas bright diyan sa Maynila”, Duterte told Failon. He also said that he is satisfied with being mayor of Davao City for 22 years and that he worked hard to achieve his dreams for Davao City. “Tama na yan. Nakikita ko hindi para sa akin yan,” he said.

In the same interview moreover, Duterte said that “people are asking not just a change of leaders but changes in the institutions and how government is being run. Looking at the list of those who declared their interests to run for President, the Davao City mayor who placed 3rd in the recent Pulse Asia survey is the only local leader that is not associated with any elected national position. The survey firm included his name despite his being an undeclared candidate because of a very perceptible clamor for Duterte to run for President.

Duterte who is known for his frugal lifestyle revealed that  there have been “moneyed people”  who personally asked him or through his friends if  he would run for higher office in the 2016 polls. He said he declined the offers for financial assistance because he does not want to raise false hopes for them.

Last week, Mayor Duterte  was surprised to see an animated  TV commercial showing a close fist swatting swarms of flies that represent the country’s ills. What was printed in the arm was “Duterte”. The mayor vehemently denied that he was behind those TV commercials. On his television  program “Ato ni Bay”  lst Sunday, Duterte asked the unknown person or entity to immediately withdraw the 30-second commercials.

Duterte has been going around the country endorsing Federalism.  The mayor was sought after by the Mindanao business and political leader to spearhead the renewed campaign for Federalism. The present form of government according to Duterte makes other regions  as vassals of Metro Manila.  He said that “ except for property taxes we send all the money there to Manila and trust lawmakers to put our money  for the good of the entire country but people are dismayed  that lawmakers funnel their pork barrel funds and other resources to bogus non-government organizations like those of Janet Lim Napoles. Duterte is  pushing for a change to a federal form of government for a more equitable and fair allocation of wealth across regions.