Poe calls Duterte, accepts defeat


Poe calls Duterte, accepts defeat 1
Grace Poe. ABS-CBN News

Grace Poe is the first presidential candidate to accept defeat, conceding late Monday, hours after partial, unofficial results showed rival Rodrigo Duterte leading the race to Malacanang.

Duterte told reporters in Davao City that Poe called him and conceded.

Poe conceding was a far cry from her morning mood, when she declared that she was confident of victory.

By Monday night, Poe placed third in the five-way race, temporarily ending her quest to be president.

It could be recalled that Poe, a former presidential frontrunner, gracefully dodged several disqualification cases filed against her and convinced the high court that she was worthy to seek the presidency.

READ: Poe camp: SC decision a 'victory for democracy'

She also raised the rights of foundlings while looking for blood relatives to help prove her being Filipino, while her husband lost a sought-after US citizenship.

No less than President Aquino tried hard to woo her to be the running mate of the Liberal Party standard-bearer Mar Roxas. She also got offers from the opposition, as she is a also a friend of UNA standard-bearer Vice President Jojo Binay.

Political analysts say it would have been a sure win, similar to Joseph Estrada's vice-presidential run in 1992 when he beat the administration bet, Lito Osmena, as well as the candidate of the then-biggest political party, Marcelo Fernan of the LDP.

Proof of this is the fact that she topped the surveys for vice president prior to the filing of the COCs last October 2015, and she is the 2nd top choice for president.

Although she has the support of some members of businessman Eduardo 'Danding' Cojuangco's party, the Nationalist People's Coalition (NPC), Cojuangco himself has not endorsed her nor her running mate, Senator Chiz Escudero. Cojuangco's right-hand man in San Miguel Corp. (SMC), Ramon Ang, has said publicly that it would be not wise for him to support only one candidate, and that he lends his airplane not just to Poe and Escudero.

Poe's relative inexperience in politics and public service, having served only 6 years in one small government agency, the MTRCB, and only 3 years in the legislature, however proved to be her weakest point.

Poe believes that if the elected leader is the rightful choice of the majority, Filipinos have won.

"With the right choice, the end of this political and moral exercise should be truth, genuine will of the people and equitable society. This way, we can say we are all winners," Poe said.