Duterte kids Bong Go on ‘fiery’ ambition to become president

Credit to Author: The Manila Times| Date: Thu, 06 Feb 2020 11:42:58 +0000

PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday joked that his former top aide, now Sen. Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, wanted to become president someday, citing his frequent presence in fires and visits to victims.

Speaking before the newly-appointed government officials in Malacañang, Duterte reiterated that he would retire from politics but Go might pursue the presidency.

“Do not nurture a personal loyalty to me. I don’t need it and I cannot run anymore so I don’t give yang papulitika pulitika (playing politics). Wala na ako diyan, bahala kayong maiwan (I’m out of it, it’s up to you to stay) except Bong Go. Maybe he wants to be president kasi lahat ng sunog nandun siya (because he is in all the fires),” Duterte said, drawing laughter from the audience.

Medyo halata man masyado. Nauna ka pa. Eh wala pang sunog nandun ka na eh. Ikaw yata tagasindi. Nauna ka pa dun sa bumbero. Wag masyadong sobrahan baka mahalata. Huwag mo dalasan yan sunog sunog eh kung sabihin nila may sunog eh trabaho ni Bong yan (It’s a bit quite obvious. You are ahead even before there is a fire. Perhaps, you light it. You are even ahead of the firemen. Don’t do too much or you might be obvious. Don’t do the fire thing often or they will depend on you everytime there is a fire),” he added.

But Go, in a statement, said that he was not thinking of running for president.

“I have no plans of running for President. Hindi ko po inaambisyon iyan. Masaya na po ako na nabigyan ako ng pagkakataon na magserbisyo sa kapwa kong Pilipino (I am not aspiring for the position. I am just happy that I have been given the chance to serve my fellow Filipino),” Go said.

Binigay na rin sa akin ng Panginoon ang maging senador kaya ibabalik ko sa tao ang serbisyong para sa kanila. Pangako ko sa mga tao na kahit saang sulok ng Pilipinas, basta kaya lang ng oras at katawan ko, pupuntahan ko kayo para mapakinggan ang inyong hinaing at mabigyan ng pansin ang inyong mga pangangailangan (God has given me the chance to become senator so I am giving back to the people the service that they deserve. It is my promise to the people in every corner of the Philippines that for as long as my time and health will permit, I will go to you to listen to your concerns and address your needs),” he added.

The senator said he did not want to talk about politics for now but was “willing to volunteer as campaign manager” in the upcoming presidential elections.

Ayaw ko pa po pag-usapan ang pulitika, mas gusto kong unahin ang pagseserbisyo. Pero kung tatanungin ninyo ako tungkol sa 2022 elections, I am willing to volunteer as campaign manager sa kung sinuman ang makakapagpatuloy ng pagbabago na inumpisahan ni Pangulong Duterte (I don’t want to talk about politics, I prefer to serve first. But if you will ask me about the 2022 elections, I am willing to volunteer as campaign manager to whoever can continue the change that President Duterte has started),” Go said.

In 2019, Go, then a senatorial aspirant, said that he has no plan to succeed Duterte.

“It’s a wild imagination po ‘yan. Wala po akong ambisyon sa ganung posisyon (That’s the product of wild imagination. I have no ambition to hold such a position),” Go said in a previous interview.

“Just like what President Duterte said, that position should not be the subject of one’s ambition. It’s a gift of God. God gives that position to whoever he thinks is best suited to lead the country,” he added.

Go had served as the trusted aide of President Duterte for over 21 years. CATHERINE S. VALENTE