“I will base my answer on the present situation which is today. So if you’re asking today, ang isasagot ko (my answer) today [is] I am certain that it is 100 percent sure that our tandem is Bato-Go, president and vice president,” Matibag said.
Duterte, however, announced on Oct. 2 that he will be retiring from politics after his term ends in June 2022.
Go, on the other hand, declined to be the PDP-Laban’s standard bearer and instead decided to run for vice president under the ruling party.
Dela Rosa then made a surprise move when he filed his certificate of candidacy for president under PDP-Laban on Oct. 8, the last day of filing.
He, however, is seen as a “placeholder” candidate for Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte who repeatedly refused to join the presidential despite mounting calls for her to seek the country’s highest post.
Matibag said the PDP-Laban is not waiting for any particular candidate to take the place of dela Rosa and Go.
“Wala po. Sabi ko nga, if you’re basing your question on my answer today, wala po kaming hinihintay (There is none. As I said, if you’re basing your question to my answer today, we are not waiting for anyone),” he said.
Matibag said the party is “ready” for any changes before or on Nov. 15, the last day of substitution of candidates for the 2022 elections.
“Nakahanda po kami lagi kung ano ang mga magiging pagbabago o changes pa na mangyayari bago mag-November 15 or on November 15 (We are ready for any eventualities or changes before or on November 15),” he said.
The country’s Omnibus Election Code allows any political party to replace their original candidates who die, withdraw, or are disqualified for any cause.
Pressed about what specific eventuality the PDP-Laban is preparing for, Matibag said: “Well, uncertain ho kasi (that’s uncertain because we cannot say.”
“Ang sinasabi ko lang (What I’m just saying is) we are prepared for any changes or any eventuality na puwedeng mangyari po (that can happen before or on November 15,” Matibag added.