Political parties of ex-presidents Ramos, Estrada, Arroyo back Marcos-Duterte tandem

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Courtesy: UniTeam Alliance

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 25) — The political parties that produced three presidents have teamed up with presidential aspirant Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr.'s party to form a coalition for the 2022 elections.

The Puwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) and Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) on Thursday joined the existing coalition of Partido Federal ng Pilipinas (PFP) and Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD).

The parties have named their coalition "The UniTeam Alliance," based on one of the themes of Marcos' presidential campaign: to establish a "unifying leadership" under him after the COVID-19 pandemic.

PMP - known then as Partido ng Masang Pilipino - helped former actor Joseph "Erap" Estrada win the 1992 vice presidential and 1998 presidential elections.

Lakas-CMD, meanwhile, produced two presidents: Fidel Ramos in 1992 and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in 2004.

Ramos founded Lakas-CMD six years after leaving the Marcos regime at the height of the 1986 EDSA revolution that toppled the dictatorship.

The former senator's running mate - Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte - chairs both Lakas-CMD and the Davao Region-based HNP.

"This is the beginning of our consolidating of the political forces at least on this side of political aisle as we have been experiencing, it has been tumultuous campaign already and we are still six months away from the actual election," Marcos said in his speech during the alliance signing ceremony at a hotel in Pasay City Thursday morning.

"I am proud of this agreement that powerfully illustrates leadership transcending throughout political colors. To PFP, Lakas-CMD, PMP, and HNP - there is no turning back," Mayor Duterte said in a recorded speech.

"Kaming tatlo po ay pawang mga anak ng presidente. Hindi na po talaga maiaalis sa aming kamalayan, sa aming dugo, at sa aming mga puso ang makapaglingkod sa ating mahal na bayan," said Jinggoy Estrada, who's eyeing a Senate comeback next year.

[Translation: All three of us are children of presidents. Serving our beloved country will forever stay in our minds, blood, and hearts.]

Under the agreement, member-parties of the UniTeam Alliance should give their "full and unqualified" support for Marcos and Duterte in the 2022 polls.

The parties are also allowed to field one senatorial candidate in the UniTeam lineup. The complete ticket will be announced on or before December 1st.

The coalition is inviting more parties to join to broaden their support base, as they will face the well-oiled machinery of the current Duterte Administration in next year's elections.

President Rodrigo Duterte is backing the presidential bid of his longtime aide, Senator Bong Go, despite his daughter's alliance with one of Go's rivals.

"Marami pang major party na, I don't want to mention, I don't want to preempt pero lahat ng major parties ay kinakausap ko," Marcos said after the signing ceremony.

[Translation: There are still a lot of major parties that I don't want to mention, I don't want to preempt, but I'm talking to all major parties.]