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Why Leni Robredo is Running for President as Independent

It's a symbolic move.
by Arianne Merez
Oct 8, 2021
Photo/s: REUTERS/Lisa Marie David
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Vice President Leni Robredo said Friday she was running for president as an independent, not as the official candidate of the Liberal Party, to show that she was open to political alliances.

While unity may not be among "principals", voters will unite around the idea that there are alternative leaders who bring them hope, said Robredo, who picked Sen. Francis Pangilinan as her vice president.

"Running as independent is our symbolic way of showing na bukas kami sa pakikipag-alyansa sa maraming mga partido, yung aming sinusulong na inclusivity,"  she told reporters.

READ:

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Leni Robredo is Running for President, Embracing Pink and Womanhood

The two highest leaders of the LP both ditched the party's signature color and came in pink and blue for Robredo and green for Pangilinan to highlight their causes for women and agriculture, respectively.

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"Yung pagkakandidato naman para sa pangulo ay hindi para sa partido kundi para sa nagkakaisang lakas ng sambayanan...Our lines remain open, yung focus na ngayon is uniting hindi yung mga principals pero uniting yung taumbayan," she added.

Prior to announcing her intent to run for president, Robredo met with several other presidential aspirants -- Senators Manny Pacquiao and Ping Lacson, and Manila Mayor Isko Moreno -- in the hopes of fielding a single presidential candidate for the opposition.

The talks apparently fell through as all four of them ended up filing candidacies for president. Asked if she was worried about splitting votes come election day, Robredo said her camp was working on uniting voters instead of politicians.

"Hindi naman kailangan na kaming mga politiko yung mag-unite pero yung pinakamahalaga is yung majority ng tao ay nabibigyan ng alternative kung saan pwede sila mangarap muli at mabigyan pag-asa muli," she said.

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Robredo said she would introduce her Senate slate next week which includes Sen. Risa Hontiveros, and former Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV.

"Yung slate namin is not just composed of representatives from the Liberal Party but from many other parties. Ito ay pagsasama-sama ng iba't ibang pinanggalingan," she said.

"We continue to be open to discussions pero yung pagkandidato bilang pangulo ay tuloy na tuloy," she said.

MORE ELECTIONS EXPLAINED:

Is Star Power Enough to Make a Senator Tulfo, President Isko?

Why Balimbing Stands for Turncoats in Philippine Politics

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