MANILA, PHILIPPINES — Vice President Leni Robredo has dropped Senator Miguel Zubiri from her Senate slate after he endorsed rival candidate Ferdinand Marcos Jr. in March, according to a statement released by her spokesperson on Wednesday.
Prior to his removal, Zubiri ran as a guest candidate for the “Team Robredo-Pangilinan” (Tropa), as well as for Robredo’s rival, former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.’s UniTeam slate.
According to Robredo’s spokesperson, Barry Gutierrez, this is “in contravention of the agreement with all guest candidates” not to endorse a presidential contender.
“With 12 days remaining before elections, we are moving forward with our 11-candidate Senate slate,” Gutierrez said.
Other senatorial candidates on the Robredo-Pangilinan slate include:
- Former Ifugao Rep. Teddy Baguilat
- Former Vice President Jejomar Binay
- Sen. Leila de Lima
- Lawyer Chel Diokno
- Sorsogon Gov. Francis Escudero
- Sen. Richard Gordon
- Sen. Risa Hontiveros
- Lawyer Alex Lacson
- Lawyer and labor leader Sonny Matula
- Former Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV
- Sen. Joel Villanueva
When Zubiri was presented on Screen during rallies where a video presentation of Robredo’s Senate bets was shown, Kakampinks booed.
Five candidates, including Zubiri, were placed on Robredo’s ticket after her team agreed not to endorse any presidential contender categorically throughout the campaign.
Former Vice President Jejomar Binay, reelectionist senators Richard “Dick” Gordon and Joel Villanueva, and Sorsogon Governor Francis “Chiz” Escudero are the other four guest candidates on Robredo’s ticket.
Only Gordon attends Robredo’s rallies on a regular basis. Gordon does not categorically endorse Robredo in his talks, but he has been putting in comments praising her leadership abilities and her anti-poverty and pandemic relief projects, Angat Buhay.
Senators Leila de Lima and Risa Hontiveros, former senator Antonio Trillanes IV, former Ifugao Representative Teddy Baguilat Jr., human rights lawyer Chel Diokno, book author and lawyer Alex Lacson, and labor leader Sonny Matula are among the candidates who make up the core group of the Robredo-Pangilinan ticket.
Robredo’s Senate slate for the 2022 elections was a strong but controversial one, as several of the candidates on her ticket are unlikely bedfellows given their recent conflicts. – WhatALife!