By Liezelle Soriano
MANILA — Albay Rep. Joey Salceda on Friday (20 January 2023) defended the alleged lavish trip of President “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland that accordingly involved 70 delegates.
This was after the Makabayan bloc criticized Marcos for his trip to Davos.
“It’s like a vacuum in international marketing of investments in the global markets so perfect, the Philippines would be first out there after three years of virtually, very little international marketing, especially Davos, there was no Davos in the past three years. So, I think tama lang po, wag lang araw-araw,” Salceda said.
Salceda added that Marcos also needs to prove that he is better than his father, the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr.
“He has to sell himself as a Marcos… The son is presenting himself to be a better version of the father,” Salceda said.
Marcos’ trip has already eight trips after he took office on June 30, 2022.
Marcos joined the Davos economic forum with First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos and some of his family members who hold government positions and these are: Marcos’ cousin and House Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, (Leyte, First District), Martin’s wife Rep. Yedda Marie Romualdez (Tingog Sinirangan) and the president’s son and House Senior Deputy Majority Floor Leader Rep. Sandro Marcos (Ilocos, First District).
Marcos also brought with him his Cabinet secretaries namely:
Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno
Trade and Industry Secretary Alfredo Pascual
Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista
National Economic and Development Authority Secretary Arsenio Balisacan
Migrant Workers Secretary Maria Susana Ople
Presidential Communications Office Secretary Cheloy Velicaria-Garafil
Special Assistant to the President Antonio Ernesto Lagdameo Jr.
Presidential Adviser on Foreign Affairs and Chief of Presidential Protocol Secretary Adelio Angelito Cruz
Sen. Mark Villar, Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Carlos Sorreta, Finance Undersecretary Zeno Ronald Abenoja, and Migrant Workers Undersecretary Patricia Yvonne Caunan were also part of the delegates.
The president is also joined by former president and House Deputy Speaker Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (Pampanga, Second District), described as the President’s “secret weapon” on his international trips.
Last November 2022, Arroyo also accompanied Marcos in Thailand for the 29th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Leaders’ Meeting.
This was followed by a trip to Brussels, Belgium for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and European Union Summit in December 2022.
More recently, Arroyo joined Marcos in his first bilateral meeting with China in the first week of January 2023.
Aside from government officials, Filipino business tycoons joined the Philippine delegation, namely:
Sabin Aboitiz (Aboitiz)
Kevin Andrew Tan (Alliance Global)
Jaime Zobel de Ayala (Ayala Group)
Lance Gokongwei (JG Summit Holdings)
Ramon Ang (San Miguel Corp.)
Teresity Sy-Coson (SM Investments)
Enrique Razon (International Container Terminal).
A report on Vera Files, claimed Marcos actually had at least 70 delegates who joined him on his Davos trip. (ai/mtvn)