Robredo still hopeful for unity ticket, but 'accepts reality' it might not happen

Aspiring presidential candidates are mere days away from filing of their certificates of candidacy (COCs), but Vice President Leni Robredo remains hopeful that the opposition can come up with a "unity ticket" to go against the administration’s bets for the 2022 polls.

Vice President Leni Robredo speaks at the webinar organized by the Presentation of the Child Jesus (PCJ) Parish Pastoral Council on September 27, 2021. (PCJ/Facebook)

However, she also knows that the personal decisions of the other presidential aspirants—Senators Panfilo Lacson and Manny Pacquiao, and Manila Mayor Isko Moreno—is beyond her control.

She said during a webinar hosted by Presentation of the Child Jesus (PCJ) Parish Pastoral Council on Monday, September 27, that she wants the opposition to unite under one ticket because she’s aware of the other camp’s resources.

“While I’m not losing hope yet, ano naman ako bukas iyong mata ko sa realidad na baka hindi iyon mangyari (my eyes are open to the reality that it might not happen),” she added.

“Wala naman kasi akong kontrol sa desisyon ng iba taong. Wala akong kontrol (I do not have control over the decision of other people. I do not have control). I have been trying my best to make all the contenders understand na iyong laban na ito hindi na sa amin, personal ito eh. Pero laban na 'to, di ba, para mabawi natin ‘yung (this battle is not among us, it’s personal. But this is a fight to take back the) soul of our nation,” Robredo said.

READ: Robredo decision on running for president being awaited by opposition, says Trillanes

The Vice President initially held separate talks with Lacson, Pacquiao, and Moreno in a bid to form a unity ticket, but this fell through. All three have since decided to announce their respective intentions to seek the presidency in May 2022.

She, however, said that she understands where the other aspirants are coming from, particularly because they don’t want to disappoint their supporters.

Robredo admitted to hearing the mounting calls for her to run, noting that she’s seen messages of support displayed outside her office building. She has also received emails, snail mails, and text messages of the same nature.

“Nababasa ko po ‘yun lahat (I can read all of those). And ako (me), I take them very, very seriously,” Robredo said.

READ: Robredo gives herself until Oct. 8 to decide on presidential bid

But she believes this shouldn’t stop others from understanding that there’s “a bigger fight” before them.

Robredo admitted that there have been times that she didn't know what to do, thus she turns to her faith and prays for the country to be put in good hands.

“Ang parati kong dasal sana iyong mensahe ng Panginoon (My prayer is for the message of the Lord to be) very clear para hindi din tayo magkamali sa ating mga desisyon (so we will not make mistakes in our decision),” she said.

Although she is holding out hope that the unity talks would eventually bear fruit, the Vice President repeatedly said she’s ready to run for president if that will be what’s best for the country.