MANILA - Aksyon Demokratiko standard bearer Isko Moreno Domagoso on Wednesday said "any help" from President Rodrigo Duterte to boost his 2022 presidential bid is "welcome," but denied allegations that he is a "lite" version of the incumbent chief executive.
"Malinaw kung sino ang kandidato nila... pero kung tututlungan ako ni President Duterte, thank you very much," he said on TeleRadyo's "Ikaw Ang On The Spot: The Presidential Candidate's Interview."
(It is clear who their candidate is... but if President Duterte will help me, thank you very much.)
"I need a lot of help. Kung sino man ang tutulong - mapa-malaking pamilya 'yan, mapatambay sa kanto - I will be happy to receive it," he said, noting that unlike other presidential aspirants, he is neither backed by a political clan nor a large machinery,
(Whoever is willing to help - may he or she be from a prominent family or a bystander - I will be happy to receive it.)
Last month, Domagoso placed third in a survey ranking presidential aspirants with 13 percent of respondents saying they would vote for him if the elections were held in October 2021.
He trailed behind former Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr., who led the pack with 47 percent, and Vice President Leni Robredo who garnered 18 percent.
'NO COMMENT' ON ROBREDO
The Manila Mayor also described Duterte as someone who "has concern" for the country, but gave "no comment" when asked to speak about Robredo.
Duterte earlier publicly shamed an unnamed Metro Manila mayor for posing in his underwear in the past, saying such a person is unfit to lead. While the President did not mention names, Domagoso is the lone mayor in the capital region who worked as a matinee idol and sexy star in the 80s and 90s.
Robredo, on the other hand, engaged in "unity talks" with Domagoso and other presidential aspirants before the filing of candidacies to have a single opposition candidate in the 2022 presidential elections.
The Vice President earlier said that Domagoso's stance on the Marcos family was among the reasons why her planned coalition with the Manila Mayor fell apart.
The Aksyon Demokratiko standard bearer has repeatedly said that instead of publicly crucifying members of the Marcos family, the scions of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos should be judged before a court for their alleged atrocities during Martial Law.
"We will never forget the past. We will be reminded of their mistakes, we will be reminded of their success and we will replicate their success if it is applicable today," he said.
"May nagkasala ba noong nakaraan? E di papanagutin natin sa ilalim ng batas, hindi sa salitaan, kukuha tayo ng camera, aakusahan natin tao pero pagkatapos ng eleksyon, wala namang kaso," he said.
(Did these people violate the law in the past? We should hold them accountable under the law, instead of giving statements before cameras, accusing people of issues, but not filing cases after the elections.)
Despite observations that he seems to be a "lite version" of Duterte - who did not hold the Marcos family into account, and even allowed the burial of Marcos Sr. at the Heroes' Cemetery - Domagoso denied that he is a "secret candidate" of the administration.
"Ang inilalaban ko yung katayuan ng tao, hindi 'yung mag-uusap, unity-unity para lang doon sa kandidato na iyon," he said.
(What I am pushing for is the quality of life of people, not engaging in unity for the sake of one candidate.)
"Ang unity na gusto natin... mag-unite tayo sa common interest ng tao, hindi interest ng politiko."
(The unity we want is to unite based on the common interest of people, not based on the interest of politicians.)