DAVAO CITY, Philippines — Administration candidates under the Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) joined the grand rally held in Davao City today, Thursday, May 9, days before the closure of the official campaign period and Election Day on Monday, May 13.
The grand rally is the second one, as the HNP senatorial bets were also present during the grand rally held In March. The candidates were also visible during big events in the city, including the Araw ng Dabaw in February.
Their presence in Davao City has a significant impact on their campaigns, as senatorial candidate Dong Mangudadatu said his presence would ensure the full support of the Dutertes to his candidacy.
Mangudadatu also expressed confidence the Mindanao vote would be of great advantage to his side, adding that he would focus on peace and conflict issues once elected to the Senate.
Another Mindanaoan candidate, Koko Pimentel was also confident to gain additional votes with the endorsement coming from HNP chair, Mayor Sara Duterte, and President Rodrigo Duterte.
“The President’s endorsement to my candidacy is a plus factor but I would entrust the result to the collective judgment of the people,” Pimentel said.
Mangudadatu, Pimentel, and another senatorial bet Francis Tolentino does not have good standings in recent surveys to which, analysts said, would compel the administration to take more efforts to improve their ratings.
For his part, Mangudadatu said he does not believe in the surveys conducted by big survey firm, and suspected the same as ‘orchestrated’.
“One undersecretary once approached me and asked money. I gave him Php2 million, and he gave me a copy where the surveys go,” Mangudadatu explained.
Davao City has almost a million votes in its three districts, a factor seen by candidates as a command vote to candidates endorsed by President Duterte. (davaotoday.com)