Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio said last week that she would not run for president next year, as had been widely expected.

The Mayor said she would not run after her father had agreed to run for vice-president.

Duterte-Carpio told local media on September 8, that she and her father “both agreed only one of us will run for a national position in 2022.”

Her announcement came the day after President Rodrigo Duterte officially accepted the endorsement of one wing of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) to be its vice-presidential bet in next year’s elections.

Non-PDP-Laban member Sen. Bong Go was recruited to be the party’s standard bearer but he refused.

The Davao mayor, however, said last week that Go approached her and offered to be her running mate should she decide to run for president. She added that Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian also offered to run as her vice-president should she opt to run for president.

Duterte-Carpio said she had no intention to join a party in disarray, with one wing headed by Energy Sec. Alfonso Cusi and the other by Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel.

The Pimentel wing of the PDP-Laban is expected to declare Sen. Manny Pacquiao as its standard bearer next year.

Vice-president Leni Robredo caused a minor storm when she said she would be willing to support either Pacquiao or Manila Mayor Isko Moreno for president if that’s what it would take to rid the country of the Dutertes.

Robredo had long been the favored bet of the opposition as she is the titular head of the Liberal Party (LP) and the Office of the Vice President has consistently earned top scores from the Commission on Audit for its proper handling of its budget.

Robredo appeased her followers by saying that she was not closing the door on a presidential bid next year. She said she would not have run for vice-president in 2016 if she was not ready to assume the presidency.

In a recent interview, however, Robredo admitted that one of her main concerns was that the LP may not have the funds needed to mount an effective nationwide campaign.

The multi-sector 1Sambayan movement was formed to find a candidate who could unite against the anointed candidate of the Duterte administration.

Led by the likes of retired Supreme Court associate justice Antonio Carpio and retired ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, 1Sambayan has been leaning towards a Robredo-Antonio Trillanes tandem, while leaving the door open for the entry of the mayor of the capital city of Mania.

Mayor Isko Moreno had initially informed 1Sambayan that he was not interested in running for president but appears to have changed his mind as shown by his now frequent attacks on the Duterte administration. 

This, after President Duterte had belittled Moreno’s reaction to the pandemic, followed by insults on the mayor’s past as a young star who posed for sexy shots. After the President called him a “callboy,” Moreno reacted by calling Duterte deaf, then cryptically telling the President to prepare for their face off in October. 

The filing for certificates of candidacy with the Commission on Elections will begin next month.

Meanwhile, another presidential wannabe, former senator Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos said he may run for president next year but his plans had not yet been finalized.

Marcos, however, was derided by various quarters after he said that if he ran and the battle was between himself and Robredo, he was sure he would win.

Robredo not only defeated Marcos in the 2016 vice presidential race but also won against the son and namesake of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos when he filed an electoral protest before the Supreme Court, acting as Presidential Electoral Tribunal.

In a related development, two former rival political groups in the University of the Philippines said Robredo was the “only viable” presidential bet next year.

The Samasa and the Tugon student movements also said the young Marcos was “delusional” in saying he would beat Robredo if they ran for the same post.