VP Sara clarifies UniTeam dissolution

Presidential candidate, Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the son of the late dictator, left, raises arms with running mate Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, the daughter of the current President, during their last campaign rally Saturday, May 7, 2022, in Paranaque city, Philippines. Marcos Jr. and Duterte are the new leaders of the Philippines, an alliance that ushers in six years of governance that has some human rights activists concerned about the course their country may take with the pair in power.
Presidential candidate, Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the son of the late dictator, left, raises arms with running mate Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, the daughter of the current President, during their last campaign rally Saturday, May 7, 2022, in Paranaque city, Philippines. Marcos Jr. and Duterte are the new leaders of the Philippines, an alliance that ushers in six years of governance that has some human rights activists concerned about the course their country may take with the pair in power.AP Photo/File Photo

VICE President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte clarified the dissolution of UniTeam during the 126th Independence Day commemoration in Davao City.

In a media interview on Wednesday morning, June 12, 2024, at Rizal Park,  Duterte explained that she had teamed up with President Ferdinand “Bong Bong” Marcos as UniTeam during the 2022 elections.

“Ang UniTeam was the tandem during 2022 elections and then tandem of Bong Bong-Sara during the 2022 elections and then humana na ang elections nadaog nami and gapasalamat mI sa atoang mga kaigsuonan, sa ating mga kababayan sa kanilang supporta noong 2022 (The UniTeam was our tandem during the 2022 elections, and then as the Bong Bong-Sara tandem after the elections, we emerged victorious. We thank our countrymen, for their support in 2022),” she said.

When asked if UniTeam still exists after their win in 2022, Duterte responded, "No, we are not candidates anymore."

Regarding the upcoming midterm elections, Duterte mentioned she cannot speculate as she is not well-versed with the candidates.

She added, “Wala pa koy plans for midterm elections pero diri sa Davao naayos natu namo first quarter of this year and wala lang ko ka attend sa covention sa Hugpong sa Tawong Lungsod pero naayos na pod nila ang partido diri sa Davao City (I have no plans yet for the midterm elections, but here in Davao, we have already made arrangements in the first quarter of this year. I was unable to attend the Hugpong sa Tawong Lungsod convention, but our party has already organized itself here in Davao City."

During the wreath-laying ceremony at Rizal Park in Davao City, Duterte was accompanied by city officials and foreign dignitaries. However, her brother, City Mayor Sebastian “Baste” Duterte, was absent from the event.

Previously, their alliance faced challenges when Congressman Paolo “Pulong” Duterte raised concerns about the People’s Initiative, followed by family members criticizing the initiative for charter changes reportedly influenced by House Speaker Martin Romualdez.

Subsequently, the Duterte family held rallies in Davao, Cebu, and Tagum. 

During the first rally, the 'Hakbang ng Maisug-Leaders Forum for Transparency, Accountability, Peace, and Security' on January 28, 2024, at the Grand Men Seng Hotel in Magallanes, Mayor Duterte urged the President to step down if lacking passion and devotion to the nation, emphasizing the importance of genuine commitment to the country's welfare. RGP

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