Philippines' Marcos says no rift with the vice president

Relationship with Sara Duterte is 'exactly the same, his 'Uniteam' with her is intact, says the president

By Reuters

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Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr delivers a speech during the kick-off rally for the New Philippines movement at Quirino Grandstand in Manila on January 28, 2024.  — AFP file
Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr delivers a speech during the kick-off rally for the New Philippines movement at Quirino Grandstand in Manila on January 28, 2024. — AFP file

Published: Wed 31 Jan 2024, 1:50 PM

Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr said there was no rift between him and his Vice-President Sara Duterte after both her brother and father strongly criticised him.

On Sunday, Duterte's brother, who is the mayor of Davao city, urged Marcos to resign over his supposed failings to address crime and a foreign policy that "endangers the lives of innocent Filipinos", while her father, former president Rodrigo Duterte, called the incumbent president a "drug addict".

Speaking to reporters while on a state visit to Vietnam, Marcos said his relationship with the vice president is "exactly the same", adding his "Uniteam" with Duterte was intact.

Marcos and Duterte ran under the "Uniteam" ticket in the 2022 election, both winning a landslide victory.

"Uniteam is not just one party of two parties or three parties. It's the unification of all political, hopefully all political forces in the Philippines to come together for the good country," Marcos said late on Tuesday.

"That is still there. It is still vibrant," he said.

Duterte, whom Marcos appointed as education secretary, said on Monday her brother's remarks must have come "from a place of brotherly love", but said she would "stay true" to her work at the education ministry, despite calls from some politicians for her to leave.

There is no indication so far that the row between Marcos and the Dutertes would escalate, but the economic planning minister on Wednesday cautioned that political instability was not good for business.


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