The tandem of Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go and President Rodrigo Duterte for the 2022 national elections is not yet a done deal, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said on Tuesday.
During the Pandesal Forum, Nograles said Go and Duterte still have indefinite decisions on calls for them to seek the presidency and vice presidency, respectively, in 2022.
Nograles said the ruling party, the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban), is “still concentrating” on who will be its final presidential and vice presidential candidates next year.
“Until now, the President has no definite decision yet as to whether he will run [for vice president]) and because of that, Senator Bong Go has no definite decision yet on whether he will also run [for president]),” he said partly in Filipino.
PDP-Laban Secretary General Melvin Matibag earlier said the party’s national executive council has already endorsed the Go-Duterte tandem as it is a “logical and popular” choice for administration allies.
The PDP-Laban is set to hold its national assembly in Bulacan on Sept. 8.
Matibag said other tandems may still be nominated since the possible pairing of Go and Duterte is still up for discussion.
While the possible Go-Duterte tandem is not yet final, Nograles vouched for the competence of the two high-ranking officials.
Nograles praised Go and Duterte for being “hardworking individuals.”
“He (Go) is always working, he sleeps late because the President also sleeps late,” he said. “He is also very meticulous, putting attention to detail even when President Duterte was still a mayor. It seems that he gives his attention to all the details, all the details, all the attention to the details, it’s him,” he said partly in Filipino.
Nograles said it is evident that Go, who was once Duterte’s long-time aide before being elected as senator, is “trying to emulate or copy” the President’s leadership qualities.
He said Duterte’s “consistency” in fulfilling his promises and exemplifying “tapang and malasakit” (courage and concern) for all inspire others like Go to be a good leader.
Go earlier said he would only gun for the presidency if Duterte will be his running mate in the 2022 national elections.
Duterte, on the other hand, has repeatedly expressed willingness to run for vice president.