Comelec: drug use won’t disqualify, after Duterte claims presidential bet does coke

Duterte addresses the nation in his weekly Covid-19 status update. (June 7, 2021)
Duterte addresses the nation in his weekly Covid-19 status update. (June 7, 2021)

ICYMI, President Rodrigo Duterte practically aired a blind item last night about a presidential bet who is an alleged cocaine user.

Yet after the chief executive made the explosive claim, Commission on Elections spokesperson James Jimenez clarified that substance abuse is not a basis for disqualification.

“Substance abuse is not among the disqualifications provided for by law,” Jimenez said in a message. “In any case, the Comelec did try to require candidates to submit a negative drug test several elections ago. The move was disapproved by the Supreme Court.”

The chief executive, who waged an anti-drug war as one of his administration’s flagship programs, claimed in a speech addressing the anti-insurgency task force that one of the presidential bets uses cocaine.

“There’s even a presidential candidate na nag-cocaine… May kandidato tayo na nagko-cocaine ‘yan, mga anak ng mayaman,” Duterte said in a speech before the anti-insurgency task force. 

(We have a candidate who is using cocaine, children of the rich.)

“Kaya nga nagtaka ako, anong nagawa, anong nagawa ‘yong taong ‘yan? I’m just asking. What contribution has he made para sa Pilipinas? Bakit ang Pilipino parang lokong-loko na supporting? Magtanong lang ako sa inyo, ano ang ginawa n’yan? Nagdo-droga ‘yan ng cocaine ang tirada n’yan,” the president went on in his tirade.

(That’s why I’m so baffled—what has this person accomplished? I’m just asking. What contribution has he made to the Philippines? Why are Filipinos so crazed about supporting him? Let me ask you, what has he done? He uses drugs, cocaine is his drug of choice.)

“Bahala kayo kung anong gusto n’yong tao. Inyo ‘yan. Ang akin lang, pagdating ng panahon, basta sinabi ko sa inyo and he is a very weak leader ang character niya, except for the name,” said the President. 

“Ang tatay—pero siya, anong ginawa niya? He might win hands down, okay. If that is what the Philippines wants, go ahead, basta alam ninyo.”

(It’s up to you who you want to support. That’s your choice. All I’m saying, when the time comes, I told you so—and he is a very weak leader, that’s his character, except for the name. His father, sure—but what about him, what has he done? He might win hands down, okay. If that is what the Philippines wants, go ahead, as long as you know.)

Although the president didn’t name names, the descriptions seem to fit Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., the standard-bearer of Duterte’s daughter, Sara, who is running alongside Marcos Jr. as vice president.

Shortly after the explosive revelation, the hashtags #SolidSnort (a play on solid north, with North Luzon as Marcos’ supposed bailiwick) and #BongBongNarcos made the rounds on social media.

We’re not sure what’s worse—whether company policies apparently have stricter employee regulations than the election of the highest post in the land, or this entire election drama continues to unfold like a telenovela.

READ: Ashley Gosiengfiao’s tarot reading reveals just what PH’s post-election future might look like

This adorable artwork reminds us why we need to vote wisely next year

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