Duterte, Marcos top initial overseas vote count in Mid East
Maxxy Santiago, ABS-CBN Middle East News Bureau
KUWAIT – Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte and Senator Bongbong Marcos are the leading choices of Filipinos in the Middle East for the presidential and vice presidential race.
In Kuwait, one of the posts that has completed the canvassing of votes in the Middle East, Duterte and Marcos led the presidential and vice presidential race with 9,747 votes and 4,777 respectively.
Marcos' closest rival for the post, Leni Robredo received 1,999 votes.
"Masayang-masaya po kami dahil nanalo po ang aming idolo. Naniniwala kami sa pagbabago sa gobyerno," said Duterte supporter, Marivic Paradero.
In Doha, Qatar, the tough talking mayor led the race with 12,475 votes with second-placer Roxas trailing far behind with 1,333 votes.
For vice present, Marcos led with 6,119 votes. He was followed by Alan Peter Cayetano with 5,442 votes and Robredo with 3,268.
In Bahrain, the controversial mayor is still the most favored candidate for president with 5,413 votes while Roxas only got 712.
For vice president, Marcos led in Bahrain with 3,228 votes, while . Cayetano got 2,085 and Robredo, 1,388.
"We successfully transmitted them to Comelec and to the National Board of Canvassers," said Ambassador Alfonso Ver of the Philippine Embassy in Bahrain.
For Saudi Arabia, the consolidated results for Riyadh, Jeddah and Al Khobar showed that Duterte received 35,713 votes while Marcos got 19,645 votes for the vice presidential race.
Duterte's runningmate, Cayetano got 13,089 votes while Roxas' tandem Robredo received 10,934 votes.
"In general, as a total turnout and as a percentage, mas mataas pa rin yung ngayon kaysa sa 2013 and 2010 so that’s encouraging. While it's true that we lost our number 1 position in the Middle East but sometimes, you can't be number 1 all the time. But the enthusiasm may still be there," said Ambassador Ezzedin Tago of the Philippine Embassy in Saudi Arabia.
Also, consolidated results from Dubai, Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates showed Duterte in the lead with 51,879 votes. For vice president, Marcos topped the UAE overseas votes with 25,319 votes.
He was followed by Cayetano with 23,583 votes. Robredo received 10,347 votes.
"Maraming maraming salamat po sa inyo at kayo po ay pumunta ng consulate para bumoto. You’ve proven that democratic process in the Philippines and even among overseas Filipinos is alive and well," said Consul General Raymund Paul Cortes of the Philippine Consulate General in Dubai.
Likewise, Duterte and Marcos led the presidential and vice presidential race in Beirut, Lebanon with 3,039 votes for the Davao Mayor and 2,408 for the Senator as well as in Muscat, Oman (Duterte, 2,719 votes; Marcos, 1,477 votes).
Cayetano only had 1,064 votes while Robredo got 353.
"Ang gusto ko mangyari na tutuparin nila iyong mga pangako nilang lahat. Wala nang kurap. Iyong mga gamit namin huwag na kalkalkin, yong tanim-bala, Sana mawala na 'yun lahat," said Rosalinda del Monte of Riyadh.
OFW Ariel Lasala added, "May pagbabago talaga. Kaya niyang puksain ang mga kurapsyon. Para umasenso naman tayo. Uwi na tayo sa Pinas di na tayo mag-aabroad."
With reports from Rachel Salinel (Dubai), Vivien Napenas (Abu Dhabi), Rowie dela Cruz (Abu Dhabi), Charles Tabbu (Jeddah), Franklin Resma (Jeddah), Iya Estrada (Jeddah), Francis Antony Nuique Jr. (Riyadh), Florante Catanus (Al Khobar), Rowen Soldevilla (Oman), Delfin Montenegro (Qatar), Kathrina Perea (Kuwait), and Rhyse Furio (Lebanon).