The “Otso Diretso” senatorial slate may be composed of abogados and politikos, but President Rodrigo Duterte believes no one from their side can match the qualifications of his former adviser on political affairs, Francis Tolentino.
Duterte on Sunday (March 3) heaped praises on Tolentino anew as he belittled members of Otso Diretso.
“Sino diyan sa lahat makatalo ni Tolentino in terms of qualification? Sige nga. Magsabi ka ng kandidato. Macalintal, Hilbay, si — si Tañada, sige daw. Ito, three terms mayor ng Tagaytay,” he said during the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan’s sortie in Zamboanga City.
Abogados Romulo Macalintal, Florin Hilbay and Erin Tañada are all running for senator as part of the Otso Diretso slate.
Duterte said he has never heard Tolentino curse in the years they have been friends.
“Tahimik talaga, mabait, hindi marunong magalit sa totoo lang, But he is a very efficient worker,” he said.
As proof of Tolentino’s dedication, Duterte recalled sending the former Tagaytay mayor to the Bicol region last year amid the threat of Mayon Volcano’s eruption.
He said Tolentino dutifully obeyed his orders and stayed in Bicol until the crisis was over.
“Tolentino. Kabait na tao, eksperyensiyado as a public servant,” he said.