MANILA – Paolo Duterte, the son of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, filed on Friday his nomination for a seat in the House of Representatives from the Davao region in the legislative elections set to take place in May 2019.
Paolo Duterte filed his certificate of candidacy in the presence of his sister and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, city information chief Jefry Tupas said on Facebook.
Paolo Duterte, 43, was the vice mayor of Davao until December 2017, when he resigned citing a “maligning of his reputation” after he was named as an intermediary in a case of smuggling 604 kilograms (1,331 pounds) of drugs worth $125 million from China.
After his resignation, the president had said his son had done the right thing as the ombudsman was investigating him, although Paolo Duterte was cleared in the case in May.
Two customs officials and Senator Antonio Trillanes – a leader targeted by the Duterte administration and a vocal critic of the president – had linked Paolo Duterte and his brother-in-law Manases Carpio with the drug smuggling case at a time when the president’s war against drugs was at its peak.
Sara Duterte has denied that she aims to move into national politics in next year’s legislative elections despite receiving good popularity ratings in recent polls and many leaders urging her do so, saying she aims to get re-elected as mayor.
In May 2019, the Philippines is set to hold its legislative and municipal elections, considered to be a litmus test for Duterte’s government in the middle of its six-year term.