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Sara says she is a ‘designated survivor’, will skip Marcos’ SONA 

Vice President's decision not to attend SONA a first since her tandem with President Marcos

By: Luisa Cabato - Reporter / @luisacabatoINQ - Inquirer.net | July 11,2024 - 05:31 PM

Sara says she is a ‘designated survivor’, will skip Marcos’ SONA . Vice President Sara Duterte will not attend the third State of the Nation Address (Sona) of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on July 22, 2024. She did not offer any reason nor explanation for her plan to skip Marcos’ upcoming Sona during an ambush interview on the sidelines of the Child and Adolescent Neurodevelopmental Center Inauguration in Davao City on Thursday, July 11, 2024. | PHOTO: Official Facebook apge of Inday Sara Duterte

Vice President Sara Duterte will not attend the third State of the Nation Address (Sona) of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on July 22, 2024. She did not offer any reason nor explanation for her plan to skip Marcos’ upcoming Sona during an ambush interview on the sidelines of the Child and Adolescent Neurodevelopmental Center Inauguration in Davao City on Thursday, July 11, 2024. | PHOTO: Official Facebook apge of Inday Sara Duterte

MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Sara Duterte named herself as the “designated survivor,” and will not attend the third State of the Nation Address of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on July 22. 

Duterte’s decision to not show up at Marcos’ third Sona is a first since their tandem won the 2022 election.

“No, I will not attend the Sona,” Duterte said in an ambush interview Thursday on the sidelines of the Child and Adolescent Neurodevelopmental Center Inauguration in Davao City.

She also said: “I am appointing myself as the designated survivor.”

A “designated survivor” is a US government official chosen to stay at a secure location during events where top leaders are gathered. This ensures continuity of government in case a catastrophic event kills or incapacitates the president, vice president, and other top officials.

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There is no such position yet in the Philippines, but Senator Panfilo Lacson filed a bill in 2019 authorizing the President to name a designated survivor.

But the Vice President did not offer any reason or explanation for her plan to skip Marcos’ upcoming Sona during the ambush interview, which video was distributed to media members by the Office of the Vice President on Thursday.

Last Tuesday, July 9, Duterte did not attend the opening ceremony of the Palarong Pambansa 2024 in Cebu City led by Marcos.

DepEd spokesperson Michael Poa said Duterte skipped the opening ceremony of the Palarong Pambansa 2024 to visit sick athletes.

“Ang alam ko po bumisita ang ating Vice President sa mga Palaro athletes na na-confine sa hospital ngayong hapon to boost their morale,” Poa said in a Viber message sent to reporters also last Tuesday.

(What I do know is that our Vice President visited the Palaro athletes confined to the hospital this afternoon to boost their morale.)

Last month, Duterte stepped down as DepEd chief and vice chair of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict. Her resignation will take effect on July 19, and she will be by Senator Sonny Angara as education secretary.

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TAGS: designated survivor, SONA, Vice President Sara Duterte

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