Theater or usurpation of public office? | Inquirer Opinion

Theater or usurpation of public office?

/ 04:10 AM June 22, 2022

Nobody but nobody ever takes an oath for the office of a President-elect or Vice President-elect! Anyone in his/her right mind would typically wait until the post is VACANT before taking an oath to embark upon the duties of such office. So what was Sara Duterte-Carpio, a lawyer, thinking? And for that matter, what the heck were President Duterte, another lawyer, and Supreme Court Associate Justice Ramon Paul Hernando thinking?

Duterte-Carpio drum beaters insist it was just theater as she is still really just a Vice President-elect, not vice president yet—a post Leni Robredo will continue to hold until noon of June 30. But the story running in all newspaper reports says it all: Sara took her oath on June 19 as the “15th Philippine vice president,” 11 days before she can actually call herself that! The oath itself speaks of the office of the vice president, whose function she is supposedly duty-bound to discharge immediately after taking such an oath.


So, two vice presidents for 11 days? The title of another news report nailed it: “‘Queer coincidence’? Duterte jokes two Dutertes to ‘sit’ as president, VP for 11 days” (News, 6/17/22). We are unsure whether to laugh over this flippancy or cry over the mockery of what we hold dear in this country. But, no matter how anyone may look at it, that oath-taking amounted to a USURPATION of a public office—a crime involving aberrant behavior, if not moral turpitude!

Yvette San Luis-Petrocelli, [email protected]


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TAGS: Duterte, Elections, Robredo
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