‘Halata masyado’: Duterte ribs Bong Go on 'presidential ambitions'

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 06 2020 10:00 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte ribbed Senator Bong Go over the latter's supposed presidential ambitions. Photo courtesy of Sen. Go/File

MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday poked fun on his former assistant, Sen. Christopher “Bong” Go, over the neophyte lawmaker’s supposed presidential aspirations.

Duterte noted how Go frequently visits fire victims, joking that the lawmaker might be the one starting the fires.

“Maybe he wants to be president kasi lahat ng sunog andoon siya parang…Halata man masyado,” the President said in his speech during the oath taking of newly appointed government officials in Malacañang.

(He goes to all the fires…It’s too obvious.)

“Nauna ka man sa ano… eh wala pa atang sunog nandun ka na eh. Ikaw ata taga-sindi. Nauna ka pa doon sa bumbero. Wag masyadong sobrahan baka mahalata,” he added, drawing laughs from the crowd.

(You arrive before the fire even starts. Maybe you’re the one starting the fires. You even arrive before the firemen. Don’t be too obvious because it might get noticed.)

The President said Go should limit his visits to fire victims because people might think that it’s the lawmaker’s responsibility to do so.

“Wag madalas sa mga sunog-sunog. Baka sabihin nila ‘ay may sunog, ay trabaho ni Bong Go yan’,” Duterte said.

(Don’t frequent fire sites too much. They might think it’s your job.)

Go meanwhile dismissed Duterte’s jokes, saying he has no plans to run for president and would rather focus on his work as senator.

“Alam niyo naman na mapagbiro ang ating Pangulo. But allow me to clarify, I have no plans of running for President. Hindi ko po inaambisyon iyan. Masaya na po ako na nabigyan ako ng pagkakataon na magserbisyo sa kapwa kong Pilipino.,” he said.

(You know our President likes to joke. But allow me to clarify, I I have no plans of running for President. I don’t dream of becoming one. I’m already happy that I was given a chance to serve my fellow Filipinos.)

He, however, said he would be willing to manage the campaign of anyone who could continue Duterte’s work.

“Ayaw ko pa po pag-usapan ang pulitika, mas gusto kong unahin ang pagseserbisyo. Pero kung tatanungin ninyo ako tungkol sa 2022 elections, I am willing to volunteer as campaign manager sa kung sinuman ang makakapagpatuloy ng pagbabago na inumpisahan ni Pangulong Duterte,” he added.

(I don’t want to talk politics, I want to serve the public first. But if you’ll ask me about the 2022 elections, I am willing to volunteer as campaign manager to anyone who could continue the change that President Duterte started.)

Go rose to the political limelight as Duterte’s close aide and gained public attention over his penchant for taking selfies with world leaders.