2022 PH vice presidential race

Atienza: If you’re not voting for Manny Pacquiao, don’t vote for me as VP

Aika Rey
Atienza: If you’re not voting for Manny Pacquiao, don’t vote for me as VP

VP BET. House Deputy Speaker Lito Atienza files his candidacy for vice president with Senator Manny Pacquaio.

Office of Senator Manny Pacquiao

Vice presidential aspirant and House Deputy Speaker Lito Atienza says he was ready to retire from politics if not for Senator Manny Pacquiao. Atienza says Pacquiao is the only reason for his VP run.

Vice presidential (VP) aspirant and House Deputy Speaker Lito Atienza would rather not be VP if Senator Manny Pacquiao is not his president.

“I don’t want to be a vice president to any other president. I’m running for vice president because Manny Pacquiao has my full trust and confidence,” said Atienza in a Kapihan sa Manila Bay interview on Wednesday, October 6.

The 80-year-old politician said that he’s tired of a warring president and VP.

“Kung iba ang magiging pangulo, iba ang iboboto ‘nyong pangulo, ‘wag ninyo akong iboto. Iboto ‘nyo ang vice president ng kandidatong yon. Pagod na tayo sa pulitika ng vice president laban sa presidente. Everytime that happens the people suffer. So don’t vote for a mixed ticket,” he said.

(If another candidate becomes a president, if people vote for another presidential candidate, do not vote for me. Vote for the vice president of that presidential candidate. We’re tired of seeing a vice president with a different kind of politics from the president.)

But of course, Atienza said, that if people would vote for Pacquiao, then they should vote for him too.

“If you’re voting for Pacquiao, please vote for me. That’s the only reason I’m running, to help him succeed in his vision,” he said.

“I don’t want to win by myself. I would be a useless vice president. Useless. We already know that,” he added.

Atienza was ready to retire

Atienza said that he would have retired from politics if not for Pacquiao. “Fifty years of public service and I am ready to retire,” he said.

The VP aspirant added that he initially told Pacquiao that he was content in helping him from the sidelines.

Atienza recalled his conversation with Pacquaio.

“Heart-to-heart, he requested me, ‘If you want to help me, not only to win but to continue good governance, I need you beside me,'” Atienza recalled Pacquiao telling him.

“I tried reasoning out. ‘Get somebody else, mine is just an additional help.’ ‘No, I haven’t seen anyone else who knows me better than you do,'” Atienza added.

Atienza filed his candidacy for vice president on Friday, October 1, together with Pacquiao, both under PROMDI.

Atienza was reportedly in talks with the Pacquiao camp for a long time, but the decision was only finalized a day before COC filing.

Both Pacquiao and Atienza are staunch religious advocates, opposing divorce and anti-discrimination bills. But Atienza on Wednesday said that he would support the anti-discrimination bill if only to protect the rights of LGBTQ+. – Rappler.com

Aika Rey

Aika Rey is a business reporter for Rappler. She covered the Senate of the Philippines before fully diving into numbers and companies. Got tips? Find her on Twitter at @reyaika or shoot her an email at aika.rey@rappler.com.