Presumptive vice president Sara Duterte-Carpio hopes to become the next defense chief once her win in the May 9 elections becomes official, her spokesperson said Wednesday, putting her at the forefront of maritime tensions between the Philippines and China.
The daughter of President Rodrigo Duterte is willing to fully cooperate with the administration of former Sen. Bongbong Marcos, who is also leading the presidential race based on an unofficial count of nearly all the votes, her spokesperson Liloan, Cebu Mayor Christina Frasco told ANC.
"The vice president-elect has indicated that she would be interested in the Department of National Defense and she's here to fully support the administration of president-elect Bongbong Marcos," Frasco said.
The vice president, whose main function is to replace the president in case of death or incapacity to hold the office, may be appointed as a member of the Cabinet.
Vice President Leni Robredo was appointed head of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council in July 2016, only to resign five months later following tensions with President Rodrigo Duterte.
Frasco said Duterte-Carpio was very thankful to the Filipino people for coming out in "record numbers" to vote for her as vice president. Currently, the Davao City mayor leads the vice presidential race with over 31 million votes.
"From Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, the voice of the people has been resounding," Frasco said.
"I believe what we can expect in the next six years is a new era of unity where the president and the vice president are going to be working in harmony as that has been their message all along," she added.
Earlier, Duterte said she would push for mandatory military service for all Filipinos aged 18 and above if she wins the vice presidency.