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Duterte camp warns of manipulation of poll results

THE camp of presidential aspirant Rodrigo Duterte on Monday raised concern over the possible manipulation of the results of this year’s elections by the Liberal Party, the political party of President Benigno Aquino III who is supporting the candidacy of former Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II.

“These reports of possible election fraud courtesy of the administration are reflective of the party’s deteriorating image and desperation, and indicative of the public crumbling trust in them,” said Peter Laviña, public relations officer of Duterte, the mayor of Davao City.

“The fear is not without basis as the administration, whose standard bearer continues to lag behind the other candidates, has the machinery, easy access and control over the process and technology.

Campaign sortie. Presidential candidate Rodrigo Duterte and vice presidential candidate Allan Peter Cayetano visit farmers during a campaign sortie in Tarlac on Monday

“We urge our fellow Filipinos to be vigilant against the forces that will undermine the integrity of the election results. Let’s protect our future, our country, our democracy.”

Laviña made his statement even as Duterte assumed the chairmanship of the PDP-Laban on the eve of his proclamation rally in Tondo, Manila.

He replaced former South Cotabato Gov. Ismael Sueno.

PDP-Laban president Senator Aquilino Pimentel III said Duterte’s appointment as the party’s new chairman will re-invigorate the party’s efforts to heed the Filipino people’s clamor for genuine reforms.

Meanwhile, Malacañang on Monday lashed out at Duterte for saying he would have former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Senator Bong Revilla released from detention if he got elected  president.

Duterte had earlier said the evidence against Arroyo and Revilla were weak.

“Perhaps it is best to ask Senator Alan Cayetano to interpret Duterte’s new statement,” presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said in a text message to reporters Sunday night. 

Duterte, who is running with Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, warned that any attempts to distort the  will of the Filipino people, “will be confronted with massive resistance and defiance.”

His camp, meanwhile, welcomed the recent Pulse Asia survey placing Duterte statistically tied at second place with two other presidential candidates. 

Duterte declared his intention to seek the presidency only in November last year and affirmed his Certificate of Candidacy early December of the same year. 

“To maintain a rating of 20 percent at this point is inspiring and is giving us more determination to work hard in our ultimate goal of instituting genuine change in our country,” Laviña said.

Duterte and Cayetano, PDP-Laban’s candidate for vice president, start their campaign rally this afternoon in Tondo, Manila, where, they said, migrants from the Visayas and Mindanao had started their dream for a better life in seeking green pastures.

Lavina said Duterte had decided to start his first campaign rally in Tondo because it had become a symbol for a hopeful journey for change.

“Unfortunately, Tondo mirrors the squalor, the neglect by government, and the disparity between rich and poor that characterize the state of our nation,” he said.

Topics: Mayor Rody Duterte , PDP-Laban , Peter Cayetano , Presidential candidate , Liberal party , campaign sortie , election 2016 , Halalan 2016
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