After Easter presser, 'mere witness' Sotto won't support calls for any bets to back out | Inquirer News

After Easter presser, ‘mere witness’ Sotto won’t support calls for any bets to back out

/ 02:59 PM April 18, 2022
Saying he was “merely a witness” to the press conference held by three presidential bets on Easter Sunday, vice presidential candidate Senate President Vicente Sotto III stressed he does not support calls for any contenders to withdraw from the 2022 race.

Senate President Vicente Sotto III. Senate PRIB file photo / Bibo Nueva España

CEBU CITY — Saying he was “merely a witness” to the press conference held by three presidential bets on Easter Sunday, vice presidential candidate Senate President Vicente Sotto III stressed he does not support calls for any contenders to withdraw from the 2022 race.

While Sotto and Senator Panfilo Lacson were present during the event, the Senate president said he and his running mate have no “connection” with the call made by Manila Mayor Isko Moreno for the withdrawal of Vice President Leni Robredo.

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“Wala akong sinusuportahan na mag-withdraw kahit na sino pa [I do not support any call for anyone to withdraw],” Sotto told reporters in an interview here.

On Sunday, Lacson joined other presidential bets Moreno and former Defense Secretary Norberto Gonzales in a press conference, where they insisted that none of them will back out from their respective bids, citing alleged attempts to convince them to do so.

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“I was merely a witness to that because I was invited to…Pero [But] my take is that the joint statement was clear and direct. They should have confined it to that. Even the media in the open forum nila..kinonfine nila doon sa laman ng [they should have confined it in the] joint statement,” Sotto said.

“Ang laman ng [The content of their] joint statement was simply that they are not withdrawing. That people speculating and fake news asking them to withdraw should stop. ‘Yun ang una [That’s the first one]. And then pangalawa [second], that they will bond together to fight anything that would subvert clean, honest, and orderly elections,” he added.

In a separate statement, Sotto stressed the need to uphold the sovereignty of Filipino voters as they pick the country’s new leaders in May.

“Let me reiterate that we – along with the other signatories – committed to serve in the government of whoever among us is chosen; to combine our forces against any attempt to subvert the will of the electorate by limiting their choices; and to continue with our respective campaigns to give our voters the most choices possible,” he said.

Sotto, however, distanced himself and Lacson from “the views or statements of other candidates on matters outside the joint statement” that was read during Sunday’s press conference.

“It is not automatic that we share the views or statements of other candidates on matters outside the joint statement, much less agree to be bound by such views,” he said.

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TAGS: 2022 polls, Nation, News, Senate President Vicente Sotto III
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