Sunday, 24 October, 2021

Philippines Vice President Robredo joins race for president

MANILA: Philippines Vice President Leni Robredo, an arch-rival of President Rodrigo Duterte and staunch critic of his deadly drug war, said on Thursday she will run for the top job, becoming the leading opposition candidate in a crowded election field, reports AFP.

Robredo has been under pressure from supporters and opposition groups to join the 2022 presidential race, but she has been well behind the front runners in opinion polls.

Analysts say the even-tempered former congresswoman could struggle.

"I will fight, we will fight," Robredo, 56, said, declaring herself a presidential candidate. "We will defeat the archaic and rotten style of politics."

President and vice president are elected separately in the Philippines. Robredo quit Duterte's cabinet less than six months after he was sworn in, after a presidential aide told her she had been barred from its meetings.

Her decision comes after her nemesis Ferdinand Marcos Jr, son and namesake of the country's former dictator, said Tuesday he would run for the top job.

Robredo narrowly defeated Marcos Jr for the nation's second-highest office in 2016, dealing a blow to the political aspirations of the powerful clan as they sought to rehabilitate their image.