PDP-Laban nominating Go-Duterte, unless alliance with Sara's HNP happens - exec

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 25) — PDP-Laban will nominate Sen. Bong Go as its standard bearer in the upcoming elections, unless an alliance is formed with the party of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, in which case the plan could change, an official of the ruling party said Wednesday.

Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, also PDP-Laban executive vice president, told CNN Philippines' The Source that the party will nominate for now Go in tandem with President Rodrigo Duterte, who is seeking the vice presidency, since the presidential daughter belongs to a different political party.

He said, however, that PDP-Laban could form an alliance with any political party "in the realm of possibilities."

"Mayor Sara belongs to a different political party. So that being the case, there has to be some sort of agreement or alliance perhaps between PDP-Laban and the party of Mayor Sara in that eventuality," Nograles said when asked about the possibility of endorsing Mayor Duterte, who leads the regional party Hugpong ng Pagbabago.

"Again, ayoko namang pangunahan ang magiging decision ng aming partido tungkol diyan (I don't want to preempt the decision of the party regarding that) but in the realm of possibilities, obviously there is always that possibility of coming up with an alliance...between PDP and another political party or a number of political parties," he said.

Nograles said that "everything else (is) purely hypothetical and speculative" about the decision of the party with regards to other political parties' possible contenders. For the meantime, PDP-Laban will nominate the Go-Duterte tandem in the upcoming national convention on September 8, he added.

Nograles told The Source, however, that President Duterte is willing to give way to his daughter in the upcoming polls since he is not in favor of a Duterte-Duterte tandem himself.

READ: Duterte may not run for VP if Sara seeks presidency, says PDP-Laban exec 

In a separate interview, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque also cited President Duterte as saying he and Go will back out of the picture if the Davao City mayor runs.

"Should Sara decide to run, Bong Go is out. For my part, dahil delicadeza, hindi po puwede dalawa kami diyan, if she runs, out na rin ako,' so yun po ang sinabi niya," Roque said, quoting Duterte.

[Translation: 'For my part, out of delicadeza, we can't both be there, if she runs, I'm also out of the picture,' that's what the President said.]

The ruling party officially endorsed the Go-Duterte tandem earlier this month.

Nograles said Duterte first accepted PDP-Laban's endorsement for his vice presidential run in a Monday meeting with the faction of Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi. He added the party continues to hope that like Duterte, Go will also accept the endorsement.

Meanwhile, Mayor Duterte has not yet publicly declared her plan for the 2022 polls. A Hugpong ng Pagbabago official previously told The Source that members of the regional party are "almost 100% sure" the mayor will just seek reelection to avoid a tandem with her father.