By Vanne Elaine Terrazola
Senator Antonio Trillanes IV shrugged off the threats by Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte after he claimed that her father, President Duterte, will ask her to run for higher office so they will stay in power.
Mayor Duterte, in a statement posted on social media Wednesday morning, warned Trillanes to not to irk her and leave her “in peace in Davao City.”
She attached in her posts a news article about Trillanes, who during a rally for Independence Day Tuesday, claimed that her running for a Senate seat, and eventually, presidency, is an option for President Duterte to be able to hold to on to power.
“Like Speaker Alvarez, my advice to you is not to think of me, speak of my name, not even a whisper of Inday Sara from your ugly lips,” Mayor Duterte said.
“Leave me in peace in Davao City or else you and your friends will spend more than a billion in the 2022 Presidential elections just to make me insignificant,” she warned.
But Trillanes, in a briefing with Senate reporters, said he would rather not respond to the Davao City Mayor’s remarks. He insisted, however, that his allegations were “facts.”
“Hindi ko na siya papatulan (I will not anymore entertain her),” Trillanes told reporters.
“Basta sa akin, sinabi ko yung kailangan kong sabihin. Kung magalit, eh ‘di magalit, kung magdrama, eh ‘di magdrama (For me, i just said what I have to say. They can get angry if they want to get angry, or put up an act out of it if they want),” he added.
Trillanes on Wednesday mantained the veracity of his claim, saying that it was tipped by “an informant” who is supposedly close to President Duterte.
He said the Chief Executive is aware that he will be slapped with various criminal charges when he steps down from office in 2022. Duterte’s order to declare martial law, pronouncements of revolutionary government, and proposals for a shift to federalism were among his plans to stay in power, Trillanes said.
Trillanes claimed that President Duterte’s “final option”, should these plans fail, would be to nudge his daughter Mayor Duterte to seek higher office, particularly as a senator in 2019, then president in 2022.
According to him, Mayor Duterte’s supposed denial is part of a “drama” which her father allegedly used as a strategy during the 2016 presidential elections.
“Hindi ko naman siya pinapansin. Nilalatag ko ‘yon as a matter of fact, na ito yung plano nila (I am not picking on her. I am just telling these as a matter of fact, that this is their plan),” Trillanes said.
“Magdeny man sila o hindi, maniwala kayo, doon at doon ang tuloy niyan (They can deny it or not, but believe me, it will end up there),” he added.
Voters, anyway, are “fond” of candidates who are “acting out,” said Trillanes.
Trillanes said he is also not concerned that Duterte’s threat will affect his partymate, Magdalo Representative Gary Alejano who had annouced his bid for a Senate seat in the 2019 polls.