MANILA - The Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) on Tuesday said it has chosen Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte to substitute for candidate Martin Dino in case he withdraws as presidential bet.
In Resolution No. 2,S,2015 signed October 27, 2015, PDP-Laban leaders resolved to substitute Diño in case he withdraws from the presidential race with Mayor Duterte "who is concededly the strongest presidential hopeful of the party..."
PDP-Laban officials noted that the need to substitute another candidate in case Diño withdraws from the presidential race, for one reason or another, is absolutely necessary.
The resolution noted: "Whereas, as previously considered in case of withdrawal, the party must compel anyone of its members who can carry the banner and torch of the party to victory, to substitute Martin 'Bobot' Diño, as the party must have its candidate in the coming May 9, 2016 presidential election, since our party has all the chances of winning the presidential race than ever in view of the obtaining political situation of today."
"Wherefore, be it resolved, as it is hereby resolved, to substitute Martin 'Bobot' Diño in case he withdraws from the presidential race with Mayor Rodrigo Roa Duterte who is concededly the strongest presidential hopeful of the party aside from Martin 'Bobot' Diño, and who must dutifully abide by the decision of the party."
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Diño filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) under PDP-Laban minutes before the October 16 deadline at the main office of the Commission of Elections in Manila. This, as Duterte refused to file his own COC for president after deciding to run for a third term for mayor.
Atty. JV Hinlo, president of PDP Laban Region 6, earlier described Dino as a strong candidate who has been fighting criminality and corruption as former chairman of the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC).
However, he said the party chose Duterte as a possible substitute for Dino in the event the latter withdraws.
"As to whether he will withdraw, you have to ask Dino, and as to whether he will accept, you have to ask Duterte," he said.
Duterte earlier told reporters he is getting tired of responding to speculations that he will eventually join the presidential race by beating the December 10 deadline to replace PDP-Laban bet Martin Diño.
''Wala - wala talaga. No political arrangement or discussion or agreement - wala talaga. I've been hiding. Kaya nandito ako sa Davao, hindi ako lumalabas,'' he said.
"I really do not know. I really do not know how to solve the problem of the Philippines. I cannot be the savior of this republic."
Duterte said he can't blame his supporters for continuously hoping that he will eventually throw his hat in the ring.
''Iyan ang iniisip ng mga tao. Pipigilan mo ba? People again are speculating on my candidacy during the substitution month. Para matapos na lang ang ingay 'o sige' tingnan natin sa Disyembre. Hope springs eternal,'' he said.
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With a report by DZMM