Marcos Jr Set for Victory in Philippine Presidential Election
Ferdinand Marcos Jr, the son of the late dictator of the same name, is on course to be named the new Philippine president, having gained more than double the votes of his closest rival with 90% of ballots counted.
The result comes as no major surprise, with the man known affectionately as “Bongbong” by his supporters leading in the polls by a significant margin in the run-up to the election.
Marcos Jr will coast to victory in spite of the controversy that still hangs over the family name following his father’s rule.
Marcos Sr ruled over the country from 1965 until he was ousted by a revolution in 1986, living his final years in exile until his death in 1989. His regime stood accused of multiple humans rights abuses and widespread corruption, with the Philippine supreme court estimating that the former dictator siphoned off $10 billion of public funds for his own personal gain.
Critics of the politician claim his campaign has sought to undermine and discredit historical accounts of the brutality and corruption of his father’s regime.
Marcos has also been the subject of criticism for his lack of a clear policy platform and his disinterest in standing up to media scrutiny, with the candidate declining to attend presidential debates.
With the initial count reaching its conclusion, Marcos Jr has almost 30 million votes and an insurmountable lead on his closest rival, current vice-president Leni Robredo. Given the large margin it is highly unlikely Robredo will ask for a recount.
The Marcos presidency is expected to continue the policies of outgoing leader Rodrigo Duterte, who has shown himself to be both ruthless and unpredictable since taking power in 2016.