February 1, 2024
President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. maintained on Tuesday that there is no rift between him and Vice President Sara Duterte despite recent verbal attacks from her father, former President Rodrigo Duterte.
In a media interview during his state visit to Vietnam, President Marcos clarified that his relationship with Vice President Duterte remains unchanged, emphasizing her continued trust and confidence.
“Well, it’s exactly the same because she has – of that nature. And, wala naman siyang sinasabi na ganyang klase. So, hindi naman nagbabago (She is not saying anything about that. So, it is still the same),” Marcos stated.
He further assured that Vice President Duterte will continue to serve as the head of the Department of Education, dispelling any speculations of a change in her position.
President Marcos reaffirmed the strength of the UniTeam alliance, a coalition formed with Vice President Duterte during the 2022 national elections. He described UniTeam as a unification of all political forces in the Philippines for the greater good of the country, asserting that it remains intact, vibrant, and operational.
The recent tension between the Marcos and Duterte families emerged when former President Duterte accused President Marcos of being on the government’s drug watchlist during a rally in Davao City. President Marcos responded by suggesting that the use of Fentanyl might be affecting the former president’s judgment.
Despite the public exchange of allegations, President Marcos assured the public that UniTeam remains strong and focused on the nation’s welfare.
As the controversy unfolds, Vice President Sara Duterte also expressed her commitment to her role as Secretary of the Department of Education. In a statement, she stated, “Despite all of this, I do not lose hope. I will stay true to my work at the Department of Education unless the President says otherwise.”
Vice President Duterte, responding to her brother Mayor Sebastian “Baste” Duterte’s call for President Marcos to resign, asserted her dedication to her position and drew strength from the support of the people.
“I take heart from the confidence of the people in my ability to work and thrive amid pandemonium,” she said, addressing the challenges and criticism surrounding her.