Transportation Secretary Mar Roxas, president of the ruling Liberal Party, said over the weekend he had no plans of running for president in 2016.
“I can honestly, sincerely, absolutely, transparently tell you that I have no plans,” said Roxas, when asked by the Inquirer if he would run for president in 2016 on the sidelines of the Capiztahan festival in Roxas City Saturday.
But he added that he was at his party’s “disposal.”
Roxas is widely assumed to be the next standard-bearer of the LP. Roxas dropped his presidential ambitions in 2010 to give way to then Sen. Benigno Aquino III, running instead as the LP’s vice presidential bet. But while Mr. Aquino emerged victorious, Roxas lost to Binay—a surprise winner in that race.
On the possibility that he and Binay may yet find themselves in the same political coalition, Roxas did not give a categorical answer. He stressed that any coalition that his party would consider should be “premised on party principles.”
“Hindi ito (this is not) a politics of convenience. We are not a political party na chaleco lang na suot-hubad (like a vest that can be easily put on or taken off),” said Roxas.
“It’s on that basis that we consider others either in a coalition or entry to the party,” Roxas said.
President Aquino last week said the LP was open to forging coalitions with other parties. He did not rule out an alliance with UNA, a coalition of Binay’s PDP-Laban and the Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino led by Joseph Estrada, his closest rival in the 2010 polls.