Skip to main content

Advertisement

Advertisement

Asia

Ferdinand Marcos Jr claims victory in Philippine election

Ferdinand Marcos Jr claims victory in Philippine election

Ferdinand Marcos Jr greets supporters during the proclamation rally in Laoag, Ilocos Norte province, north of Manila on Mar 25, 2022. (Photo: AFP/Ted Aljibe)

MANILA: Ferdinand Marcos Jr on Wednesday (May 11) claimed victory in the Philippine presidential election, vowing to be a leader "for all Filipinos", his spokesman said.

With an initial count almost complete, Ferdinand Marcos Jr, popularly known as "Bongbong", has secured more than 56 per cent of the vote and more than double the tally of his nearest rival, liberal Leni Robredo.

The win is an astonishing reversal in the fortunes of the Marcos family, who have gone from the presidential palace to pariahs and back again in the space of a few decades.

"To the world, he says: Judge me not by my ancestors, but by my actions," Vic Rodriguez said in a statement.

Voters had been predicted to back Marcos by a landslide in Monday's election, after a misinformation-filled campaign.

For years pro-Marcos accounts have flooded social media, leaving many young Facebook-educated Filipinos believing his father's rule was a golden period of peace and prosperity.

In reality, Marcos senior left the Philippines bankrupt, and killed, tortured and jailed tens of thousands of opponents during his corrupt dictatorship.

Hours after his thumping victory Marcos Jr visited his father's grave at the national heroes' cemetery in Manila.

Photos posted on official Marcos social media accounts on Wednesday showed him standing before the oversized tomb with his head slightly bowed and covering his eyes with his right hand, as if crying.

"This is a victory for all Filipinos, and for democracy," Rodriguez said in the statement.

"To those who voted for Bongbong, and those who did not, it is his promise to be a President for all Filipinos. To seek common ground across political divides, and to work together to unite the nation."

The Marcos family's astounding journey from ignominy back to political favour has overshadowed questions about what Marcos' administration would do.

There were few hints on the campaign trail after Marcos snubbed televised debates and largely avoided media interviews as he sought to avoid own goals.

Rights groups, Catholic church leaders and political analysts fear the huge win could embolden Marcos to rule with a heavy fist and push through constitutional changes that could entrench his rule.

Marcos's running mate Sara Duterte, the daughter of the outgoing president, also won the vice presidency, which is elected separately, in a landslide.

Their success at the ballot box means the two offspring of authoritarian leaders will hold the highest elected positions for the next six years.

The overwhelming win has devastated Robredo's supporters, who saw the election as a make-or-break moment for the country's fragile democracy.

Many of them went door to door across the vast archipelago in a months-long effort to convince voters to support the liberal candidate for the top job.

Source: AFP/lk

Advertisement

Also worth reading

Advertisement