MANILA — In a somewhat change of tack, President Rodrigo Duterte now thinks running for the vice presidency in the 2022 elections is sensible.
"There are a lot of people pushing me to run for Vice President. It is a good idea, I think, particularly if we talk about the drug problem," he said in a speech in Malacanang on Wednesday.
Duterte, who won in 2016 on a platform of curbing crime and wiping out the country's drugs crisis, admitted he has yet to fulfill some of his promises during his presidential campaign.
"Marami pang hindi ko nagawa. I promised about four things. Corruption, I am doing it. I am firing people left and right, sa gobyerno. Then I promised criminality. I think medyo bumaba na ang crimes against the people. Ang isa pa, iyong droga at others ito ... to pursue infrastructure projects. Iyon ang naiwanan ko na hindi ko nagawa at hindi ko kontrolado," he said.
However, he also said he will fulfill his promise to support House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez, a political ally, if the latter runs for the vice presidency.
This was part of matters discussed during the meeting that resolved the House leadership struggle between Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco and Taguig Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano last year, Duterte said.
“If you (Romualdez) run for Vice President, I will support you. And I will hold on to that commitment," said Duterte.
He earlier claimed he is "resisting" running for vice president in next year's elections to avoid accusations that he wants to stay in power.
The PDP-Laban, which Duterte chairs, urged him last month to run for vice president and choose his running-mate. Some members of the party earlier urged his daughter Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio to run for the presidency.
Duterte has repeatedly denied that his daughter will run for President.
But Malacañang has said Duterte-Carpio is among the President's choices for endorsing as presidential candidate, along with his former longtime aide Sen. Christopher Go, former senator Bongbong Marcos, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, and Sen. Emmanuel Pacquiao.
—Report from Joyce Balancio, ABS-CBN News