Robredo leaves 2022 fate to unification of opposition forces

Xave Gregorio - Philstar.com
Robredo leaves 2022 fate to unification of opposition forces
In this handout photo, Vice President Leni Robredo leaves the Session Hall of the Batasan Pambansa after the House of Representatives' appropriations panel speedily passed the proposed budget of the Office of the Vice President for 2022.
Office of the Vice President

MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Leni Robredo said Friday that she will run for president in the 2022 elections if she is picked by a united opposition as their bet for the highest position in the country.

“Kung ako ‘yung mapili ng unity ticket, tatakbo ako, kung ako ‘yun,” Robredo told reporters at the sidelines of her Vaccine Express program in Pampanga. “Kahit sino kalaban, basta ako ‘yung pipiliin ng anti-admin forces, laban ako.”

(If I am picked by the unity ticket, I will run, if that is me … Whoever the opponent may be, as long as I am picked by anti-administration forces, I will fight.)

Two weeks before the filing of candidacies, a clear united opposition has yet to surface, although opposition coalition 1Sambayan and Robredo have been working separately to build unity within the vast anti-administration field.

For one, Robredo said there are plans for her to meet both Sen. Manny Pacquiao and Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, two politicians who are rumored to run for president, but this has not yet materialized.

Robredo previously met with Pacquiao and Moreno separately, in talks which she hinted were “not easy” as they hail from different parties and represent different groups who are all urging them to run for president.

“Maraming mga gusot na inaasikaso, pero hindi ako nawawalan ng pag-asa. Hindi ako nawawalan ng pag-asa na ang papairalin ng lahat ay pagmamahal sa bayan,” she said.

(We’re still untangling things, but I am not losing hope. I am not losing hope that love of country would prevail in everyone.)

Robredo was in talks with Senate President Tito Sotto and Sen. Ping Lacson, who have announced their candidacies for vice president and president in next year’s polls. She has also spoken with Sen. Dick Gordon.

For now, Robredo said she wants to give herself up until the third or fourth week of September, even up until the last day of the filing of candidacies, for her to make up her mind on whether to run for president.

But she said that she would run if it were a head-to-head battle with former Sen. Bongbong Marcos, whom she won against in the 2016 vice presidential election.

Ultimately, however, her decision rests on her ability to unite the opposition and whether those forces would pick her to run for president.

“Handa akong lumaban, kung ‘yun ‘yung kakailanganin, pero handa rin akong mag-support ng somebody else kung ‘yun ang kakayanin,” Robredo said.

(I am ready to fight, if that’s what’s required, but I am also ready to support somebody else if that is what’s necessary.)

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