Formation of united anti-Duterte front still possible

By Junex Doronio

September 20, 2021

LAPU-LAPU CITY, Cebu – Hope for a united front of all anti-Duterte forces was rekindled on Monday as Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” confirmed that he had a meeting with Vice President Leni Robredo and Senator Manny Pacquiao ahead of the filing of candidacy on October 1 to 8 this year for the national and local polls.

Sen. Manny Pacquiao, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, and Vice President Leni Robredo

Robredo of the Liberal Party (LP) had earlier said she is open to supporting an “Isko-Pacquiao” tandem if that is what it will take to defeat the presidential and vice-presidential bets of the outgoing Duterte administration.

“Yes, we had a meeting and Vice President Robredo so we’re trying to reach out to each and everyone. Ako naman mayroon ako taingang lagi na puwede makinig eh. Wala naman masamang makinig eh (I always have an ear ready for listening. There is no harm in listening.),” Moreno said.

BUHAY party-list Representative Lito Atienza also admitted that he was working to convince Moreno and Pacquiao to team up in the 2022 elections.

Some political analysts said if Pacquiao makes a “supreme sacrifice” and slides down to being a vice presidential bet, he can beat President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.

But the Manila mayor, who has Visayan roots, refused to provide the details of their meeting.

Moreno is the only child of Joaquin Domagoso, a stevedore from the Antique province of Western Visayas who worked at Manila’s North Harbor, while his mother Rosario Moreno is from Allen, Northern Samar in the Eastern Visayas region.

With the declaration on Sunday, September 19, by Pacquiao that he is running for president, Moreno still expressed hope that decisions for the presidential race will be made in a couple of days.

“I’m very optimistic that things will be better when we heal the wounds with our fellowmen. Mas madaling makaka-move on (It would be easier to move on),” he said.

Moreno is the president of the Aksyon Demokratiko political party.

Several groups, including an association of Metro Manila-based young businessmen and a multi-sectoral organization of Ilocanos, have been urging him to run for president. (ai/mtvn)

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