MANILA, Philippines — Former senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Thursday said his declaration of intent to seek the presidency in the 2022 elections was not meant to pressure Vice President Leni Robredo to run for the highest post in the country.
Trillanes said his decision to announce his intent to run for president was triggered by a “confluence of events,” including Robredo’s transfer of residence from Naga City to another town which, the former senator said, would qualify her to run for governor of Camarines Sur.
“Definitely this move is not to pressure Vice President Leni Robredo in any way.”
“This is a requirement by the [1Sambayan] coalition because they are about to start the selection process, and I need to change my status from being an alternative to that of being a principal in order for me to be included in that selection process,” Trillanes said in an interview won ABS-CBN News Channel.
“As an alternate, you cannot be included because for as long as the principal who is Vice President Leni Robredo is still there, then you cannot be qualified or you cannot be included [in the selection process],” he added.
On Wednesday, Trillanes formally declared his intention to run for president in the 2022 elections by conveying to the 1Sambayan coalition to change his status from being an alternate candidate to Robredo to being a principal candidate for president to vie for the Coalition’s nomination.
This was “in view of VP Leni’s preparations to run for Governor of Camarines Sur in 2022”, Trillanes said in his statement.
Robredo’s spokesperson, Barry Gutierrez, however, said the vice president has yet to come up with a firm decision regarding her plans for the 2022 elections.