MANILA, Philippines – Hours after Senator Bong Go officially backed out in the presidential race, President Duterte personally filed his statement of withdrawal with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Tuesday afternoon, December 14.
The post vacated by Duterte as a senatorial aspirant from Pederalismo ng Dugong Dakilang Samahan (PDDS) can no longer have a substitute since the deadline for substitution of candidates who voluntarily withdrew from the race was on November 15.
He can likewise just fill in for a candidate until late morning of the election day assuming that they have the same surname, and he or she voluntarily pulls out from the race, by reason of death or disqualification.
Meanwhile, last November 30, Bong Go said that his family has been against his decision to run for the highest office. He also said that he accepted the challenge to run since he wanted to follow the request for his party, PDP-Laban, chaired by President Rodrigo Duterte.
“Wala na po ako sa karerang ito. Nakapagsalita na ako nung Nov. 30, pinaintindi ko lang sa supporters ko na nagre-resist ang aking puso, isipan sa pagtakbo,” Go said.
[Translation: I am already out of the race. I already said it last Nov. 30. I wanted my supporters to understand that my heart and mind were against my candidacy.]