President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday said that the public should consider him a candidate for vice presidency in the 2022 national elections despite his camp’s shilly-shallying on whether he would run.

The 76-year-old president said he did not want to be a “lame duck” in his final year in office.

“Maybe at this time you can say that maybe, to maintain the equilibrium sa lahat, consider
me a candidate for the vice presidency at this time,” Duterte said during the inauguration of the Light Rail Transit Line 2 East Extension Project.

Duterte said it would not be an issue for him if the elected president would be from the opposition.

“Ngayon, kung tatakbo ako ng vice president, manalo ako, kung hindi ko kaalyado ‘yang presidente, all I have to do is to join the military and the police in the fight against crime, drugs, especially criminality and all, and also maybe go around the AseanASEAN countries for a more cohesive relation between them kasi wala na ako e,” he added.

Duterte has been reluctant about his 2022 plans. His spokesman Harry Roque said in June, amid clamor within the PDP-Laban political party for Duterte to seek the vice presidency in the 2022 national polls, that he was ready to retire after his presidency ends.

“Pang-ano lang ‘yon sa politika, leverage…you would know what is a lame duck. Kaya ikaw, hindi ka talaga papayag na maging s**t ka rin, so nandito ka…Posturing ‘yan e. Political posturing so that they would not treat you badly kasi paalis na ako e,” Duterte said.

Duterte marked the fifth year of his six-year term on June 30. The next presidential elections are slated for May 2022. John Ezekiel J. Hirro