President Rodrigo Duterte is “not interested” in extending his presidency beyond 2022, Malacañang said on Monday.

“The president is not interested in extending his term. And he leaves it to the Filipino people, the sovereign people to decide if they want to amend the Constitution to postpone the elections,” Palace spokesman Harry Roque said in a virtual presser.

Last week, House Deputy Majority Leader and Pampanga Rep. Mikey Arroyo asked the Commission on Elections if it would be possible to move the 2022 national elections to a later date, citing the threat of Covid-19.

Roque rejected the suggestion, saying the pandemic should not be used as “a ground to cancel and reschedule the elections.”

Duterte’s presidency will end on June 30, 2022.

Presidential and vice-presidential elections are held every second Monday of May, every six years after May 1992, under the 1987 Constitution.

The next elections are slated for May 9, 2022.

Roque said the postponement of the national polls could only be done by amending the 1987 Constitution.

“Sa Saligang Batas ay naka-specify iyong petsa ng halalan para sa presidente, bise presidente, kongreso at senador. Ang pupuwede lang ma-postpone ng Kongreso ay iyong mga eleksiyon na hindi nakasaad sa Saligang Batas kasama na diyan iyong mga barangay elections,” he said. John Ezekiel J. Hirro