Inday Sara’s final answer: “BBM is my President!”

Everybody’s attention was focused on events that transpired behind closed doors in an undisclosed hotel in Cebu City. “Waiting with bated breath” was an appropriate phrase to describe how most Filipinos watched out for clues. At the back of everybody’s mind, the meeting between former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. and Davao City mayor Inday Sara Duterte will determine the outcome of the May 9, 2022 elections.

When they emerged from the meeting, both BBM and Inday Sara were tight-lipped about what they had talked about. But the pictures that were splashed all over Facebook and Twitter spoke volumes. A picture speaks a thousand words, as the old saying goes. The message was singular, as it was unmistakable. The fusion of the solid South and the solid North had taken place. As a picture published by Mike Acebedo Lopez, a known trusted friend of Inday Sara, the tiger and eagle had morphed into just one.

But it must have been hard for Lopez to keep the suspense. In a series of posts, Lopez reported that the two-and-a-half hour closed door meeting revolved around ISD’s support for the candidacy of BBM. And later on Sunday, Lopez published another poster showing BBM and ISD as a tandem. I checked with my own sources who have access to the two. They confirmed what Lopez had broadly hinted at: ISD made a commitment to helping BBM win the Presidency.

It is not yet known what ISD’s own plans are. Initially, she will stick to her re-election bid as City Mayor of Davao. The idea for her to run as Vice President, however, remains strong. For indeed, a BBM-ISD tandem would be formidable. She has until November 15, 2021 to make a final decision.

As I pointed out in my livestream Sunday night, ISD as Vice President would be feasible if BBM agrees to make her a working second-in-command. That can be achieved by assigning her to a major Cabinet portfolio that she can use as platform to demonstrate her leadership capabilities for the next six years. Two departments stand out as perfect candidates for this purpose: DSWD and DILG. Either departments will enable her to build a strong grassroots base to make her the hands-down choice to become BBM’s successor.

What is important at this time is that the suspense is over. BBM can now focus on building a strong national organization. He should approach President Duterte to formally seek his blessings now that ISD has opted not to run with finality. I believe PRRD won’t have a hard time deciding to give his support to BBM. With this unfolding of events, we can look forward to making continuity happen.

About Manuel "Boy" Mejorada
Manuel "Boy" Mejorada is a journalist and social media activist. A former Iloilo provincial administrator, he is now waging a crusade against corruption and narco-politics.

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