Opposition Sen. Chiz Escudero yesterday declared that it is not time for him to run for the presidency but vowed at the same time that he would continue his fight for good governance.
“Napagpasyahan ko, na hindi tumakbo bilang pangulo sa darating na halalan. Napagpasyahan ko na hindi man bilang kandidato, ako’y may papel na pwedeng gampanan bilang Pilipino at ordinaryong botante sa panahong ito,” the 40-year old lawmaker said in a speech at Club Filipino.
“Napagpasyahan ko na hindi lang ngayon ang panahon para matupad ang pinanghahawakan kong pangarap at layunin kong panguluhan nang hindi nakatali. Patuloy kang panghahawakan ang pangarap at pangakong iyan. Hindi man ngayon kundi sa darating na panahon,” he said.
Escudero announced his decision almost a month after he resigned from the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC) so he could freely make up his mind without any other interest and agenda in mind but his hopes and dreams for the country.
“I’ve always said that for me, it’s the presidency but not at all cost. Not at the cost of losing my soul, not at the cost of losing myself, not at the cost by being eaten up by the system and the process and certainly not at the cost of not being able to do the things that I was and set out to do,” he told a crowd of supporters and allies.
Escudero, who has been among the frontrunners in the latest presidential surveys, said he had consulted with family, close friends, and supporters on his plans for the 2010 polls.
“Hindi ko rin kayang gawin ang dapat at gusto kong gawin at kung makakain lamang ako ng sistema. Para sa akin, hamon itong dapat tingnan ng lahat na ng unang nagdeklara, sila ba’y nakain na ng sistema o hindi pa, sa daan tungo sa panguluhan,” said Escudero.
“Sila ba ay kaya pa ring gawin ang lahat ng pinangako sa atin na magaganda at matatamis habang nangangampanya. Hindi ko makokonsensyang sabihin ‘yan kung hindi ko rin lang kayang gawin kung ako ay pagtitiwalaan niyo. Dahil po sa lahat ng nabanggit ko, akala ko’y madali pero hindi,” he said.
Escudero thanked his supporters for their trust and confidence and vowed to continue his fight for a “new Philippines” in the days ahead.#