Roxas silent on Senate plans amid opposition's call to run in 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Amid the opposition’s call for him to run for senator, former presidential candidate Mar Roxas remains mum on his political plans for 2019.

Asked if he has plans to run for the Senate next year, Roxas told Rappler: “Am concentrating on my family and my mom. Marami akong utang sa kanila (I owe them a lot)."

Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon and Senator Paolo Benigno Aquino IV earlier said the Liberal Party and other groups are urging Roxas to run next year.

Drilon said the Senate “certainly” needs someone like Roxas, who is “extremely qualified” for the post.

Roxas served in the Senate from 2004 to 2010, before launching his unsuccessful vice presidential bid in 2010. He then became Transportation secretary and Interior and Local Government secretary before launching his presidential campaign in 2016.

After losing in the 2016 polls, Roxas enjoyed his private life with family and friends. He was also seen roaming the country for his thank-you tour. Life after public service has also given Roxas more time to do camping and other outdoor activities. 

Roxas ranked between 14th to 19th in the recent Pulse Asia Ulat ng Bayan survey. Only reelectionist Aquino made it to the so-called Top 12, out of all the possible LP candidates.

President Benigno Aquino III, meanwhile, also said that “as of this time,” he is not yet considering a senatorial candidacy next year. He said he would rather focus on helping the LP candidates, including cousin Bam, get elected. –

Camille Elemia

Camille Elemia is Rappler's lead reporter for media, disinformation, and democracy. She won an ILO award in 2017. She received the prestigious Fulbright-Hubert Humphrey fellowship in 2019, allowing her to further study media and politics in the US. Email