(2ND UPDATE) Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio condemned Thursday 3 minority senators for allegedly seeking the endorsement of her father, President Rodrigo Duterte, before the 2016 elections and then criticizing him more than a year later.
In a Facebook post, Duterte-Carpio dubbed Senators Antonio Trillanes IV, Risa Hontiveros and Francis Pangilinan as "plastic" and "opportunists."
The 3 lawmakers belong to cause-oriented group Tindig Pilipinas, which has criticized the government's war on drugs and called on the President to open his bank accounts to scrutiny.
"Matanong ko lang, nung mga panahon na humingi kayo ng tulong, may isyu ba kayo sa governance ni PRD? Wala. Ngayon na nanalo na siya? Meron. Hunger Games, Pilipinas: Plastic na, oportunista pa," Duterte-Carpio said.
"Kayo 3 may ambisyon mag Presidente... Akala ninyo yung circus ninyo ngayon magpapanalo sa inyo sa 2022? Hindi."
The mayor claimed Pangilinan reached out to her dad years ago, allegedly saying that he "can make it" with the endorsement his wife, actress Sharon Cuneta, and the elder Duterte.
Hontiveros meanwhile allegedly asked Duterte-Carpio "several times" to help campaign for her in Davao City.
Duterte-Carpio hurled similar accusations against Trillanes, saying: "Meron ako picture na nakipagkita ka kay PRD kasi humingi ka ng tulong niya sa VP campaign mo."
At that time, Duterte was also running his own campaign for the presidency.
The mayor said witnesses can confirm her allegations.
Vice President Leni Robredo meanwhile was spared from Duterte-Carpio's allegations. "I'll reserve my remarks kasi sabi mo (Robredo) naman hindi ka member ng Hunger Games Pilipinas," the mayor said.
PRINCIPLE NOT LOYALTY
Hontiveros, for her part, said she was "grateful" for the support of Duterte-Carpio during her election campaign and has repaid this by promoting gender rights and human rights, among others.
The mayor, Hontiveros said, was aware from the start of her stand on extrajudicial killings so her criticism of the anti-narcotics drive should come as no surprise.
The senator reminded Duterte-Carpio that dissent serves as a check to abuse of power in a democracy and "should never be viewed as a hindrance."
"I harbor the Mayor no ill will and I wish her well. But this is not a question of loyalty. This is a matter of service, of consistency and of principle, and the defense of the rule of law and human rights. I am sure, as a fellow public servant, she understands that," Hontiveros said in a text message to ABS-CBN News.
A saddened Pangilinan for his part said he knows how to be grateful to his supporters, including those in Davao City but there are times when he must draw the line.
"Marunong din naman tayong tumanaw ng utang na loob sa mga tumulong sa atin sa halalan. Kasama na dito ang Davao City. At sa katunayan, ilang proyekto din ang nilaan natin sa Davao mula 2001 hanggang 2012 sa dalawang termino natin bilang senador," he said in a statement.
"Subalit ang tungkulin natin sa bayan at sa kapwa Pilipino ay mas matimbang sa anumang pagkakaibigan. May hangganan din ang tumanaw ng utang na loob," he added.
In response to Duterte-Carpio's allegations of presidential ambitions, Pangilinan said he would have jumped ship to the President's party if political ambitions were his sole motive.
"At sa usapin na ambisyon ang nagtutulak sa akin para punahin ang administrasyon. Sa totoo lang, mas madali at may pakinabang sa nag-a-ambisyon ang tumahimik na lang at sumama sa agos. Marami sa Partido Liberal ang lumipat na sa PDP-Laban dahil sa ambisyon at sa pulitika. Dapat sana ganun din ako," he said.
Trillanes meanwhile said Duterte-Carpio's allegations happened at a time when he was still unaware of the President's alleged wrongdoings.
"Ang mga panunumbat ni Mayor Sara Duterte ay nung hindi ko pa kilalang mamamatay tao at magnanakaw ang tatay nyang si President Duterte. Iba na ngayon, alam ko na ang katotohanan," he said.
Trillanes added that if he was really an opportunist, it would have been better for him to be an ally of the President.
"Di ba naisip ni Sara Duterte na di hamak na mas madaling maging oportunista sa pag sipsip ngayon kay Duterte imbes na kalabanin sya?" he said.
The senator, who has alleged the President and his family are keeping undeclared wealth, also renewed his call to the Dutertes' to sign a bank waiver.
"Maiba ko, kelan kayo pipirma ng waiver para mapatunayan nyo sa taong bayan na hindi kurakot ang pamilya nyo?" he said.