DAVAO CITY—This city’s mayor Sara Zimmerman Duterte-Carpio took an early oath of office on Sunday as the country’s 15th vice president in the old San Pedro Street backdropped by the historic San Pedro Cathedral and the tower clock
that witnessed the city’s growth since the 1930’s.
Her father, President Rodrigo Duterte, as well as the incoming president, Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., attended the rites. Bongbong and Sara’s victory in the May 9 elections had been billed as the first time the two top positions of the land are held by political leaders from the same camp.
Joining Sara onstage as she took the oath was her mother Elizabeth Zimmerman, who had long been separated from the President.
She took her oath of office before Supreme Court Associate Justice Ramon Paul Hernando.
The vice president-elect did not issue any statement as to why she held an early inauguration, but insiders said it was intended to allow her to invite the big names in Philippine politics, such as the Marcoses and former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. This would also allow her to attend the inauguration of her tandem partner, Marcos Jr., although it was also anticipated she was likely to take a vacation after a hectic campaign.
Major Gen. Nolasco Mempin, commander of the 10th said there was no report of any attempt by any group to disrupt the inauguration as 3,700 security forces were spread out to the borders of the Davao Region and southern part of Caraga Region and eastern part of Region 12.
Marciana Paredes, 64, an officer of the senior citizens’ association in Barangay 37, told the BusinessMIrror the BBM-Sara tandem was the “idol of the association because we knew how they ran the government,” referring mainly to Sara Duterte’s management of the city.
She said “it would be good if Bongbong Marcos” would also visit Davao
City sometime and observe firsthand how well the city was managed “so that he would also implement the same program”.
A similar sentiment was aired by Marivic Patolot, 54, of San Antonio Agdao. She who also wished the Marcos-Duterte tandem would continue the “ayuda” program “especially for us the poor, and the many who lost their job in the pandemic.”
In her speech, the vice president-elect told the people as well as the VIPs who graced the event: “Thank you for coming to my inauguration,” she said.
“I am a proud Davawenya, a proud Mindanawan,” she said in the vernacular, drawing lusty cheers from the crowd. “I may not be the best and the brightest leader, but no one can defeat my spirit as a Filipino,” she declared.
Image credits: AP Photo/MANMAN DEJETO