Who wants to be on the bad side of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, the trusted daughter of President Rodrigo Duterte?
The answer would be nobody as far as the allies of President Duterte in the House of Representatives are concerned.
Rep. Magnolia Antonino of Nueva Ecija said lawmakers reached out to the mayor during a lunch fellowship hosted by Speaker Gloria Arroyo for Sara and the House members in a hotel in Quezon City on Monday.
“It was very casual. I shared the same table with Mayor Sara and Speaker Arroyo, and there were no discussions on politics. Everybody was taking photos of her, taking selfies with Mayor Sara… kaya di nasiyamasyadonakakain [that’s why she was hardly able to eat],” Antonino said in a news conference.
“Tuwangtuwaangmga congressman kay Mayor Sara (The lawmakers were so happy to meet Mayor Sara). But she did not address the lawmakers. It was Speaker Arroyo who spoke and told us get back to work, hit the ground running, that she is counting on all of us,” she added.
Back in February, the mayor had a run-in with then-speaker Pantaleon Alvarez of Davao del Norte.
In an Instagram post, she accused Alvarez of betraying her father by bragging to people that as the speaker, he can move to impeach Duterte.
The mayor claimed that Alvarez has falsely tagged her regional party, the Hugpong ng Pagbabago (Alliance for Change), as an opposition party.
“Anosabimo in a crowd, ‘President, ibasiya; Speaker ako (You said in a crowd, he’s the President, he’s different. I am the Speaker). I can always impeach him!’ And you call me opposition? Somebody should really tell the President about the truth,” Sara said.
“Kung asshole kasa Congress (If you are an asshole in Congress), don’t bring that to Davao, leave it in Manila. Somebody should tell the President what you are doing. How dare you call me part of the opposition. Kapal ng mukhamo (What gall). You messed with the wrong girl,” she added.
To this day, her criticisms of Alvarez remain posted on her verified Instagram account.
Alvarez denied making such statements but it apparently convinced no one since he was swiftly removed as speaker ahead of President Duterte’s State of the Nation Address on July 23.