Who is Joining Marcos in Quiboloy Channel's Presidential Debates?

Bongbong Marcos and three rivals.
Photo/s: Screenshot/SMNI YouTube

Presidential candidate Bongbong Marcos and three of his rivals will attend the Tuesday night debate hosted by SMNI, the broadcaster led by church leader Apollo Quiboloy.

Labor leader Leody de Guzman, former national security adviser Norberto Gonzales and former presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella will join Marcos Jr. in the event, the first in debate format during the campaign period.

Marcos Jr.'s lawyer Vic Rodriguez said the son of the late dictator would attend the presidential debate after skipping several interviews and the CNN Philippines debates on Feb. 27. Quiboloy had Marcos Jr. for president.

READ MORE: Why Marcos Skips Debates? Filipinos Tired of Bickering, Says Spokesman

De Guzman said he would attend the debates "kahit tila dumadayo ako sa home court ni Marcos Jr."

"Bilang kandidato, obligasyon kong ilahad ang aking plataporma sa lahat ng botante (kasama ang mga nanlalait sa pagtakbo ng isang labor leader sa pagkapangulo)."

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Abella, outgoing President Rodrigo Duterte's former spokesman, confirmed his attendance in a Facebook post. "Mamayang gabi, see you all!"

Gonzales will attend, according to his campaign page.

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Five candidates -- Vice President Leni Robredo, senators Ping Lacson and Manny Pacquiao, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, and lawyer-cardiologist Jose Montemayor Jr. -- will skip the debates.

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Robredo and Moreno cited conflicts in schedule as they make their rounds in Panay Island and Samar, respectively.

Lacson said he and his running mate Vicente Sotto III wouldn't join of their Quiboloy's endorsement of Marcos Jr. Pacquiao cited controverisies surrounding Quiboloy, who is wanted by the U.S. for conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking.

Montemayor said the SMNI owner "will never ask nor invite" him to join the program. "It's really okay and I have no problem with that. God is my Campaign Manager and He is working now," he said in a Facebook comment.

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