Roy Señeres withdraws from presidential race
Citing health reasons, OFW Family Club party-list Representative Roy Señeres has withdrawn from the presidential race in the upcoming May polls.
A representative of Señeres arrived at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Friday afternoon to file the withdrawal on his behalf.
In a statement, Señeres said he backed out of the race because his doctors advised him to stay away from stress due to diabetes.
“I wish to inform you all that after much thought and prayers to God Almighty, I am hereby announcing my withdrawal from Philippine presidential race. I do so with the blessing of my family and upon the recommendation of my doctor who has advised me to avoid stress due to my long-standing diabetes so as to prevent the complications thereof,” he said.
The withdrawal paper, however, was not received by the poll body’s law department as it should be filed personally under Comelec rules.
But Seneres said his withdrawal from the presidential derby was not equivalent to withdrawal from his advocacy, “that is to fight for the rights and welfare of our labor sector, particularly the overseas Filipino workers, their family members, and local workers victimized by labor contractualization.”
“Rest assured that the battle will go on through the campaign for re-election of the OFW Family Party-List which will continue to push for pro-labor and pro-OFW advocacies in its legislative agenda,” Señeres added, thanking his family and supporters for their “loyalty and support.”
Señeres’ name was included in the list of certified candidates for president, which was released by the Comelec on the same day of his withdrawal.
The Philippine Daily Inquirer previously reported that two Supreme Court magistrates, Justice Jose Catral Mendoza and Justice Bienvenido Reyes, allegedly pressured Señeres to back out from the presidential race to benefit another presidential aspirant and his fraternity brother, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.
But Señeres then belied the Inquirer report.
“It’s not true that in the sense that while I can confirm the two (justices) were present during the lunch meeting, they did not utter any word about the possibility of my giving in for Mayor Duterte. We were talking about other things,” Señeres said.
“I declined. I said ‘I’m prolife, he (Duterte) is prodeath’,” he said in the Inquirer report.
Señeres and Duterte were fraternity brothers at the San Beda College Lex Talionis.
Señeres served as Philippine ambassador and labor attache to the United Arab Emirates and chairman of the National Labor Relations Commission. He said he was running to champion the welfare of overseas Filipino workers and to fight contractualization.
He also said he already had a complete Senate slate. With reports from Tina Santos, Philippine Daily Inquirer/CDG
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