by Dominic Enrique Sarip
With less than a year left on his presidential term, the incumbent president already revealed some of his plans after his term and for the upcoming 2022 elections.
President Rodrigo Duterte already endorsed several politicians for the upcoming elections and also revealed his plans to run as a vice-president as he seeks to continue to hold onto power and to get away from what he did to our country. He has already endorsed several politicians for the upcoming elections that came from his party, PDP-Laban, cabinet members, and officials from his administration.
On the top of the list is his long-time servant and senator, Bong Go, which he endorsed to run for president. For the senatorial bets, Duterte’s list includes Metropolitan Manila Development Authority Chairman Benhur Abalos, Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar, Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission Chairman Greco Belgica, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, Information and Communications Technology Secretary Gregorio Honasan II, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, and Public Works and Highways Secretary Mark Villar, Senate Majority Leader Miguel Zubiri, House Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda, and former Senator JV Ejercito and Actors Robin Padilla and Willie Revillame and media personality Raffy Tulfo.
The most controversial remark of President Duterte regarding the 2022 election is that he may consider running for Vice President next year when his term ends "if there is a space." He says that this is possible to protect him from being held legally accountable for his wrongdoing, claiming that another national position will give him immunity from suit.
The reason of the President behind his intention to run for Vice President shows that he admits to his wrongdoing during his term, and he could be held legally accountable. His attempt and his reason behind it show how he disrespects our law and constitution.
"Sabi ng batas, kung bise presidente ka, may immunity ka. Eh 'di tatakbo na lang ako ng bise presidente. After that, tatakbo ako ng bise presidente," said Duterte on July 17 during the PDP-Laban assembly that discussed the 2022 elections.
The attempt of another national government position after a presidential term is a scenario that never happened in the history of our country. There is no incumbent President who has ever decided or at least attempted to run for Vice President after their Presidential term.
Many critics and lawyers have something to say about the remarks of the President on the immunity of the Vice President from suit.
“A vice president has no immunity from suit,” That is rewriting the Constitution, the law, and even jurisprudence. said Edre U. Olalia, president of the National Union of People’s Lawyers.“
Lawyer and former Congressman Neri J. Colmenares said the President’s plan to run for the Vice President to escape imprisonment after his term ends is:``shameless and legally insane.”
“A vice president “is impeachable but not immune from suit,” “His statement is a false self-assurance just to pander himself and his allies, Party-list Rep. Carlos Isagani T. Zarate“
“The VP is not immune from suit by law or by tradition. Non-issue. Non-story” said former Supreme Court spokesperson Ted Te
Well, according to law experts, what the incumbent President wants is not possible, that the Vice President is not immune from suit.
It is expected that Duterte wants to get away from all the bad things he did during his presidency that could put him in jail, and that’s why the President and his allies are doing everything to prevent that from happening. Aside from that, he also wants to hold on to power to do everything he wants, just like what he did in his presidential term.
We do not need another term for a madman and his allies. We need a new and clean government that cares for the wellness of the people and respects the law and constitution. We need a government that doesn’t include officials from the past administration or anyone affiliated with Rodrigo Duterte and his allies. The upcoming 2022 election is vital for the future of our country since this will be our only chance to prevent another chaotic government. Enough is enough. Let’s end the culture of impunity, clownery, and incompetent governance. Vote wisely for the upcoming 2022 elections or suffer for another six years.
Dominic Sarip is a third-year Political Science student in Colegio de San Juan de Letran. He is a consistent Dean's lister and at the same time, he serves as the Vice-President of the Letran Politics, the official Political Science organization of Colegio de San Juan de Letran.
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