The Stream

Philippines election: Who will succeed President Rodrigo Duterte?

On Thursday, October 7 at 19:30 GMT:
Election season has kicked off in the Philippines, and the race for the presidency is heating up. As the deadline to announce candidacies ends, voters now have a clearer picture of who’s running for the top job in 2022.

President Rodrigo Duterte maintains high popularity among the electorate, but is constitutionally barred from pursuing a second term. At least half a dozen candidates are expected to vie for his spot, including newly retired boxing icon and senator Manny Pacquiao and incumbent Vice President Leni Robredo, head of the country’s largest opposition party.

Duterte himself has announced plans to retire from politics, but is expected to endorse someone who will protect him from an International Criminal Court investigation into thousands of state-sanctioned killings during his five-year war on drugs. Possibilities include Duterte’s daughter Sara, mayor of the southern city of Davao, and Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., the son of the Philippines’ former dictator Ferdinand Marcos, both of whom are leading in the polls.

In addition to president, some 18,000 other posts from senator to town hall official will also be filled after the May election. In years past, campaigning in the Philippines has been a raucous, colorful affair. However, analysts say the COVID-19 pandemic, slow pace of vaccinations and ensuing lockdowns means candidates will need to rely more on social media to get their message across.

Still, interest in the upcoming election is high, with more than 63 million people registered to vote so far – half of those under 40 years old. For many, top issues include getting the pandemic under control, boosting the economy, and resolving a long-standing dispute with China.

In this episode of The Stream we ask, who will succeed Rodrigo Duterte as president of the Philippines? Join the conversation.

In this episode of The Stream, we are joined by:
Lian Buan, @lianbuan
Host, Law of Duterte Land Podcast

Jose Ramon Albert, @toots_albert
Senior Research Fellow, Philippines Institute for Development Studies

Lisandro Claudio
Assistant Professor of South & Southeast Asian Studies, UC Berkeley