Duterte consolidates power through elections

Through violence, deceit and widespread cheating, Duterte managed to get 10 out of 12 of his candidates elected to the Senate in the recent elections. This brings the number of pro-Duterte senators to 19 or 3/4 of the Senate. There are only five opposition senators left, with one of them, Sen. Leila de Lima, languishing in jail.

The opposition failed to win even a single seat. In the Senate, it only takes 13 votes to pass a bill. Among the newly elected senators are Imee Marcos, daughter of dictator Ferdinand Marcos; Ronald dela Rosa, police chief who spearheaded the bloody “war against drugs” and Christopher Go, Duterte’s special aide who spent 30 times more his net worth and openly used public funds for his campaign.

Aside from the three, other pro-Duterte winners are Pia Cayetano, Sonny Angara, Lito Lapid, Francis Tolentino, Aquilino Pimentel III, Ramon Revilla Jr and Cynthia Villlar. Nancy Binay and Grace Poe, who are neither Duterte’s partymates nor considered as opposition, also won.

In the Lower House, 85 representatives from Duterte’s political party, the PDP-Laban, won. This number was followed by 43 from Manuel Villar’s Nacionalista Party (NP); 36 from Eduardo Cojuangco’s Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC) and 25 from Ronaldo Puno’s National Unity Party (NUP). The opposition Liberal Party (LP) only won 18 seats. Other winning representatives came from Lakas, Asenso and various regional parties, including Sara Duterte’s Hugpong ng Pagbabago. NP, NUP, Lakas, Asenso and most regional parties are PDP-Laban and together, they constitute the majority in the Lower House.

In the provincial level, 41 out of 81 governors are Duterte’s partymates. Most local candidates were compelled to support Duterte’s party for fear of being arbitrarily included in his narcolist. In many places, Duterte supported two or three candidates vying for the same position to ensure votes for his senators.

Destroying the party list system

Duterte ordered his minions to use create electoral parties to paralyze the party list system and prevent progressive parties, particularly the Makabayan bloc, from gaining their rightful number of seats.

Only six representatives from four progressive parties will serve in the next Congress after all the slander and attacks against them by the military, police and Duterte himself. Bayan Muna garnered the second highest number of votes and will have three representatives. Among them is lear Euphemia Cullamat, a Lumad and a member of Kasalo-Caraga. Gabriela, ACT Teach­ers Party and Kabataan Party­list will have one representative each.

Due to the regime’s manipulation and fear-mongering, Anakpawis was not able to gather the required number of votes to win a seat in Congress.

Fifty one parties won 61 seats in Congress under the party list system. Twenty nine of them have representative who are either Duterte allies, former politicians or big businessmen.

ACT-CIS, Marino and Duterte Youth are some of the parties associated with Duterte. ACT-CIS, which garnered the most number of votes, is spearheaded by the Tulfos who are known as rabid supporters of Duterte and his brutal “anti-drug war.” They also support his proposed amendments to the pernicious Human Security Act.