Aquino to announce 2016 presidential bet by June – Valte
Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte says, 'I know for a fact that the presidential candidate will be announced by President Aquino by the end of June'

COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF. President Benigno S. Aquino III walks among troops upon arrival at the Dambana ng Kagitingan in Pilar, Bataan for the 73rd Commemoration of the Day of Valor on April 9, 2015. File photo by Lauro Montellano Jr/Malacañang Photo Bureau

MANILA, Philippines – Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said on Saturday, April 18, President Benigno Aquino III will announce his candidate for president this coming June. 

Political strategists and analysts say critical political decisions must be made by candidates and political parties alike by the second quarter of this year, a little less than a year before the May 2016 elections.

Responding to reporter questions about the possibility of Aquino announcing his bets for the 2016 elections by June or July, Valte said, “I don’t know if the Senate slate will be announced by then, but I know for a fact that the presidential candidate will be announced by President Aquino by the end of June.”

At this point, the administration party’s presumptive bet remains to be Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II. Roxas has not made any categorical public announcement about his decision, even as Senate President and Liberal Party vice president Franklin Drilon was reported as saying Roxas had intimated to party mates he is interested in seeking the presidency.

Survey numbers

Roxas’ numbers in the latest March surveys have not been very encouraging, however. In the latest Social Weather Stations top-of-mind-for-president survey, Roxas was tied at third place with Davao Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, both of them getting 15%. 

While Duterte’s numbers rose by 10 percentage points from December 2014, Roxas’ numbers dipped by 4 percentage points from his previous 19%.

Vice President Jejomar Binay led the SWS list with his 36%, followed very closely by Senator Grace Poe with 31%.

An earlier March Pulse Asia presidential preference survey mirrored the same results, with Binay and Poe still emerging favorites. Binay got 29%, while Poe rated 14%. Roxas placed sixth with 4% compared to Duterte’s 12%. Duterte tied former president Joseph Estrada at third place in the Pulse Asia survey.

Valte also said that the President has not openly discussed from which party his presidential candidate would come from, but has instead repeatedly cited the characteristics of the person he wants to become his successor. –