Duterte threatens to retire amid presidency bid calls

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Thursday, March 27, 2014


DAVAO CITY -- Mayor Rodrigo Duterte threatened to retire from politics after 2016 if his supporters in the city continue with their campaign to urge him to run for president in the next election.

It was learned that several barangay captains who supported the “Rody Duterte for President Movement” are planning to stage a rally in this city today, March 28, to show their strong support for Duterte.

The plan did not sit well with Mayor Duterte though, as he said he will recall all his support to the barangay captains if they keep on with their campaign to compel him to run for the presidential election come 2016.

Duterte has been supporting the barangay captains with his discretionary fund. The mayor said the barangay captains are making a "mockery of his political life."

The mayor said that if the rally will push through, he will publicly declare his desire to retire from politics after 2016. He added that this would finally put an end to all the rumors and ease the minds of other presidential candidates.

"Lest I be the source of anxiety to the presidentiables. I will make it easy for them, I will retire from public office after 2016," Duterte said.

Several barangay captains initiated a signature campaign last February to gather at least one million signatures to urge Mayor Duterte to run for president. As of early this month, the campaign has already gathered 800,000 signatures in Davao City alone.

The signature campaign proponents said they will expand their campaign to the entire Davao region.

Mayor Duterte, however, dismissed all efforts for him to run for president. He said he does not want to seek the highest office and that he is content with serving the people of Davao City.

But some known presidentiables are still worried. A very strong contender for the position reportedly sent an emissary to ask Duterte if he has reached an agreement with Senator Grace Poe for a possible tandem in 2016.

Poe recently visited Davao City to join in the celebration of the 77th Araw ng Dabaw. (BOT of Sun.Star Davao/Sunnex)

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 28, 2014.

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