DAVAO City Mayor and vice presidential aspirant Sara Duterte-Carpio said that as early as 2019, there have already been calls for her to run for the presidency.

"Adtong 2019, duna nay nag-ingon sa akoa 'Day, pag-andam kay gusto namo nga mudagan ka og [pagka]pangulo’ (In 2019, someone already told me, ‘Inday, you have to prepare because we want you to run for president’)," Duterte-Carpio said during a caravan activity in Tangub City, Misamis Occidental.

But the mayor initially declined as she is planning to finish her last term.

“Naa pa koy isa ka termino sa siyudad sa Davao [City]. Naa pa koy gusto humanon nga mga proyekto. Kitang mga politiko, kahibalo ta nga kulang ang tulo ka tuig para mahuman ang isa ka dako nga proyekto (I have my last term in Davao City. There are still a lot of projects that I wanted to accomplish. For us politicians, we all know that a three year-term is not enough to accomplish a certain project),” she said. “Sakto ang nine years, alanganing ang six years (Nine years is enough, but six years, it’s not enough).”

Duterte-Carpio, who was first elected as mayor from 2010 to 2013, was reelected in 2016. She was supposed to run for reelection in her last term for the 2022 elections, but withdrew her candidacy and named her brother, incumbent Vice Mayor Sebastian Duterte as her substitute.

Despite turning down the calls to run for the presidency, various people continued to talk and convince her to run for the 2022 elections.

Calls for her to run for the highest post had even intensified in June and July this year, months before the filing of the certificate of candidacy (COC) in October.

This had prompted her to reconsider it and weighed on the “public’s pulse” on her possible presidential bid for next year’s election.

"Niana ko, 'Mangutana usa ta sa mga tawo kay lisod. Dili ing-ana kadali ang mudagan og presidente sa isa ka nasud (I said, ‘Let’s ask the public first because it’s not easy to run for president in a certain country)," the mayor said.

Duterte-Carpio also said her political plans were discussed within the family, where it was agreed that only one Duterte should run for the highest electoral post.

The mayor’s father, President Rodrigo Duterte, in September, said he accepted the nomination of his party, PDP-Laban under the Cusi faction, to be their candidate for vice president.

The mayor already made a pronouncement in September that she will not run for the national polls, and instead will seek a reelection bid.

On October 8, the last day of the COC filing, she said many of her supporters were disappointed, while some even said that they were “depressed” with her decision.

“Sa tinuod lang, ako pud ang na-pressure kay pag-abot og November 15, nagkamali ko og estimate sa mga tao. Abi nakog October 8 humana ang tanan, wa na tay estoryahan, humana naman. Nagdesisyon naman (To be honest, I was also pressured because when November 15 came, we somehow misread the public’s opinion. I thought that it will all be over by October 8, there’s nothing to talk about since it’s all done. I already made my decision),” Duterte-Carpio said.

“Wa mihunong ang mga tao sa ilang panawagan. Nagsige silag caravan, nagsige silag vigil, nagsige silag suroy sa mga community. Nagsige ko ingon nga 'Hunungi na nah ninyo. Muabot ra na inyohang gusto. Dili pa karon.' (But then, people kept on calling for me to run. They organized caravans, prayer vigils, and they even roamed around the community. I kept on insisting ‘You stop it because there will come a time that your clamour will be heard. But not now’),” she added.

It was then that someone approached her and told her that her father will not be running for vice president and had asked if she would consider running for the said position.

"Mao tong dunay niduol sa akoa. Ilaha kong giingnan, 'Inday Sara, wala mudagan imong amahan pagka-bise presidente. Pwede ba nga ikaw ang mudagan og bise presidente kay dili pwede -- Maglisod mi kung walay Duterte nga makit-an sa mga tao (It was that moment that someone approached me and said ‘Inday Sara, your father is not running for vice president. Can you run for that position? It would be hard for us that not a single Duterte will be seen by the public)," she said.

Duterte-Carpio made consultations on her decision and eventually heeded the call of her supporters to run for vice president.

But the mayor, reiterating her recent speech in a caravan in Tagum, Davao del Norte, that many of her supporters were not happy with her decision.

Duterte-Carpio was in Tangub City to meet her supporters and volunteers.

She urged them to also support her running mate former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., who is running for president.

On Thursday, November 25, Partido Federal ng Pilipinas (PFP), Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD), Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP), and Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) have formally signed an alliance agreement as Uniteam.

The alliance adopted Marcos Jr. as Uniteam's Presidential candidate and the mayor as Vice Presidential candidate for 2022.