MANILA -- Vice-presidential candidate Sara Duterte-Carpio walked up the UniTeam stage in Parañaque on Saturday clad in classic Filipino garb.
She jokingly told the crowd along Aseana Avenue that she thought she was about to be sworn in.
"Maraming salamat. Happy Mother's Day din sa lahat ng ina na nandito. Kasi sinabi ninyo na panalo na ako, nag-barong ako. Akala ko oath-taking na eh," Duterte-Carpio said in jest.
She and presidential candidate Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. have consistently held massive leads in pre-election surveys, numbers that have convinced them victory was at hand.
"Mananalo talaga tayo basta't walang tulugan sa Lunes para di na tayo madisgrasya ulit," Marcos said, alluding to his loss to Leni Robredo in the 2016 vice-presidential race, a defeat he protested.
In February 2021, the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, unanimously rejected Marcos' protest but Marcos continues to allege there was fraud.
"Alam naman po natin na kapag naiwanan natin, kung minsan ay maraming nangyayari na di kanais-nais. Katakot-takot na kape 'tong uubusin natin," the former senator said.
During the rest of his speech, Marcos again brought up how Filipinos are able to overcome hardship through unity, saying that voting for him will improve the country's future.
Lakas-CMD, one of the founding parties of the UniTeam alliance, reported that more than 1 million people attended Saturday's rally in Parañaque. Local authorities have yet to release an official crowd estimate.
Marcos also promised to restore jobs lost during the COVID-19 pandemic and continue most of President Rodrigo Duterte's policies, such the "Build, Build, Build" program and the war on drugs.
During the campaign, Marcos avoided most presidential debates and spontaneous interviews with the media, with his team citing reasons ranging from alleged anti-Marcos bias in the case of television host Jessica Soho to a supposed desire to campaign directly to the people.
If he wins the 2022 presidential elections, he will face a country that is P12 trillion in debt with a debt-to-GDP ratio of more than 60 percent.
He will also have to address issues such as recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, Manila's competing claims with China in the West Philippine Sea, as well as rising commodity prices amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine.