The ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino–Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) wing headed by Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi is hoping Senator Christopher “Bong” Go would reconsider their endorsement for him to be the party’s standard bearer.
Cusi, PDP-Laban President, made this remark after Go formally declined the ruling party’s endorsement to be its presidential candidate with President Rodrigo Duterte as his running mate in the 2022 national elections.
“The NEC [national executive committee] understands your position. Nevertheless, we are determined to endorse you as PDP Laban candidate for President of the Philippines in the coming National Elections,” he said in a letter addressed to Go.
He said the PDP-Laban trusted and believed in Go’s “leadership qualities” namely humility, sincerity, strong political will, honesty, good sense of justice, and innate goodness and goodwill towards fellowmen as exemplified by putting up Malasakit Centers nationwide.
“These traits that you share with President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, make you the logical successor to be our country’s next President,” he added.
Cusi said the PDP-Laban believes he is the “best candidate” to tandem with Duterte, and that they were the “best pair to lead our country forward.”
“Your track record of service, done quietly and without much fanfare, speak for itself,” he said.
Cusi said the fact that Go refused the opportunity to be the party’s presidential candidate showed his humility.
“While some are gloating over their supposed achievements and boasting about their purported qualifications so they may become President, you on the other hand refuse the opportunity to become one. Now more than ever, we are convinced that we made the right choice. We earnestly hope that you will reconsider,” he added.
On Aug. 4, the Cusi-led faction adopted PDP-Laban NEC Resolution No. 5, which formally nominated Go and Duterte to top bill the party’s 2022 lineup.
Go thumbed down the PDP-Laban nomination through a letter to Cusi dated Aug. 30, saying he would rather devote [his] time and attention” in his work as the head of the Senate Health Committee during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“This includes not just crafting laws but also performing representation and constituency services, particularly by helping those in need, as I have been doing ever since,” Go said.
Earlier this year, PDP-Laban has split into two factions after Cusi and his allies pushed Duterte as the ruling party’s vice-presidential bet in 2022.
The other group, led by Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel, is reportedly rooting for Senator Manny Pacquiao to run for president.