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ROUGH CUTS |    Bed for strange political bedfellows

Vic N. Sumalinog

NOW other than Davao City’s ruling family of President Rodrigo R. Duterte that now accounts the country’s President, the incumbent Mayor in Baste, a Congressman of the city’s first district, and now a former mayor running for the country’s Vice Presidency in Inday Sara Duterte. In other words, by the Duterte ascendancy, the political clan is able to convert Davao City into a bed for strange fellows to lay on.

     Imagine where else in the country that politicians are elbowing each other just to be considered for membership in the family-initiated home-grown political parties – the Hugpong sa Tawong Lungsod and the Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HTL-HNP). The former was organized by the Duterte patriarch while the former by his daughter Mayor Inday Sara Durterte-Carpio. Seemingly, the two parties are consanguine.

     Why are we saying that the city has become a bed for strange bedfellows?  Of course it is because there are local politicians who would not even want to touch each other with a 10-foot pole. Now they are doing their damn best – or call it damn worst – just being included in the local administration line up, or even just being allowed to claim membership of sibling political groups.

     In fact this is the same situation now that makes a mockery of the word “endorsement” by the political gods. The most vivid of this seemingly gobbledygook political scenario is that which is happening in the city’s second district.

     The candidates for congressman in the district in reelection seeker Vincent Garcia, and second time aspirant Councilor Danilo Dayanghirang are both claiming to have the backing of Mayor Sara and her father President Duterte. In fact in several social media posts both the incumbent congressman and the challenger are assiduously showing documentary proofs of the endorsements by the two local administration gods. The latest that we saw is the raising of the hands of both Garcia and nephew Javi Campos by mayoral aspirant Baste Duterte. Campos is running for reelection as councilor for the same district.

     Danny on the other hand, is posting quite frequently his pictures with either Mayor Sara or the President, sort of saying that he has the bigger chunk of the two leaders’ endorsements. Congressional candidate Danny is also tagging along with him his son who is running to fill in the position vacated by him in the City Council.

     Frankly we do not know what the endorsements of the two candidates by the same party bigwigs make out of its intended objective. If we have to compare the endorsements to an air pressure applied under an object in order to push it up similar to a hydraulic jack, then doing it on two objects at the same time divides the force into two.

     And we fear that this principle will likely apply in the case of the two similarly affiliated aspirants for Congress in the city’s second district. As a consequence it would be now a matter of assiduously campaigning by the two if they have to attain their objective of winning the contest.

     In the end it is still resources at the disposal of the candidates, volunteerism of their rabid supporters, guts, and organizational ability that will count. Why, because the endorsement the protagonists get from the same “influentials” may end up leading the voters into confusion.

     We vividly noticed this possible situation during a campaign rally in the Bankerohan area last week when candidates for councilors all apparently with the “blessings” of the “blood-related” local administration parties, made litanies of their personal commitments to the electorates if elected but seemingly forgetting the platforms of the parties they claim to be part of.

     In other words, the candidates sharing the same stage were visibly “to-each-his own” just to convince the electorate they are worth their votes.

     For comments and/or reactions to any issues we take up in this column we can be reached through our e-mail address at:; Mobile No. 09392980435; or Landline at 2372169. We can also be contacted through Messenger.



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