Sara Duterte won't attend Comelec's VP debate

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 25) — Vice presidential candidate and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte has no plans to attend the debate sponsored by the Commission on Elections, her camp said on Friday.

Her spokesperson, Mayor Christina Frasco, did not offer any explanation.

She also clarified that Duterte did receive any formal invitation to attend the debate slated on March 20 despite an earlier announcement from the poll body.

"Be that as it may, whether or not there is an invitation, Sara Duterte will not be attending the debate," Frasco said.

The camp of presidential candidate Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. also said it is unsure if he will attend Comelec's presidential debate on March 19, stressing it will depend on the aspirant's schedule for that day.

Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez on Thursday announced that all presidential and vice presidential candidates, except for VP bet Lito Atienza who will undergo knee replacement surgery, have "committed" to participate in the event.

The tandem of Marcos and Duterte has skirted events with other candidates, including the upcoming debates hosted by CNN Philippines on Feb. 26 and 27.

The only group event attended by Marcos was the debate conducted by SMNI, the network owned by Pastor Apollo Quiboloy, who endorsed his candidacy.