Albay Rep. Joey Salceda on Wednesday endorsed the presidential candidacy of Vice President Leni Robredo, breaking from the choice of former President Gloria Arroyo, whom he had served for years.
Robredo displayed her commitment to good governance and good economics "throughout her entire life" and she could be trusted to do the same should she become president, said Salceda.
"Definitely, I endorse Leni because not as a Bicolano, but as an economist. She is good for the economy, good for our future, and I think the Philippines is in good hands under her leadership," he told reporters during Robredo's visit to Albay's capital, Legazpi City.
"Siya naman ang kandidato talaga na totally qualified for the presidency. Walang bahid na kahit ano."
Salceda is a longtime economic adviser of Arroyo, who is supporting the ticket of former senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. for president and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio for vice president.
Robredo, an economics graduate, can lift the Philippines from the pandemic and also has "genuine compassion for the poor", Salceda said.
"Reforms always entail sacrifice. Nobody among the current candidates for president has the same credibility and ask sacrifice for the people to forego current pleasures for future gains," he said.
"I think she is the only candidate right now who can unify the people because of her credibility."
Salceda, who earlier floated the possibility of Duterte-Carpio running for president, did not mention if he would also support Robredo's running mate, Sen. Francis Pangilinan.