MANILA – Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Thursday formally declared his intention to run for vice president in 2016 with or without the endorsement from Nacionalista Party (NP) president Manny Villar.
”I’m 100 percent sure that I will run for vice president in 2016,” Trillanes, an NP member, told the media during the Kapihan sa Senado.
Trillanes made his announcement after taking up short courses on national and international security and leadership development in Harvard University.
”Yes, it’s part of my preparation to run for vice president,” Trillanes, the first to declare as vice president candidate, said.
The senator said he pursued his plan to seek higher office in 2016 despite garnering only 1.1 percent from the recent Social Weather Station (SWS) survey for vice president.
”Since I entered politics, I was not afraid of losing for as long as you’re doing the right thing. In 2007, I was number 56th with only 3 percentage point but I won,” Trillanes said.
”Whenever I made a big decision in my life, I pursued it. Anyway, it’s not ‘suntok sa buwan’ (impossible). In 2007, 3 percent, so I can do it,” he added.
Trillanes said if Senator Francis ‘Chiz’ Escudero will run, the latter would be the top contender for vice president.
”Senator Chiz would be the front runner. But I’m not threatened. I took it as a challenge. He has a big lead even in our own survey but that’s okay, I will still pursue it,” Trillanes said.
He believes that Senator Grace Poe will not run for vice president despite her huge lead over second running Escudero in the previous vice presidential preferential surveys.
”I believe Senator Grace Poe will run for president along with Secretary (Mar) Roxas and Mayor (Rodrigo) Duterte,” Trillanes said.
Despite declaration of Vice President Jejomar Binay that he won’t back out, Trillanes still sees Binay to give up the fight due to the allegations of corruption and cases to be filed against him at the Office of the Ombudsman.
Trillanes said he has already informed Villar about his plan to seek vice presidency since 2013.
”Even if I will not get the endorsement, I will still pursue my plan as a member of NP. I won’t leave my party,” he said.
Trillanes, the poorest senator, said he got the full support of the strong 450,000-member Magdalo party-list.