The son of deceased former Philippine President Corazon Aquino has
declared his candidacy for president in next year's polls. The
decision comes after strong public clamor for Senator Benigno Aquino
III to carry on his mother's democratic legacy.
Senator Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino says he is heeding the call of the people to lead their fight.
Club Filipino in Manila, where his mother Corazon Aquino took the
presidential oath in 1986, the senator said he will run for president
under the Liberal Party in next year's election.
death of the former president last month, politicians and many members
of the public have urged Senator Aquino to run for president. They
hope he can take advantage of the revival of the spirit of the "people
power" movement that his mother led to peacefully oust the
authoritarian government of Ferdinand Marcos.
increased after Senator Mar Roxas, a frontrunner for the presidency in
the same party, backed out in favor of Aquino. He has offered the vice
presidential slot to Roxas, who also comes from a well-known political
The 49-year-old bachelor had been a three-term
congressman before joining the Senate. He is the only son of parents
who have become icons of democracy in the Philippines. His father and
namesake was assassinated in 1983 upon returning from exile.
of thousands lined the streets of Manila last month to bid farewell to
Mrs. Aquino. She was a staunch defender of the Philippine Constitution
against those who attempted to weaken the country's democratic
Before her death from cancer, Mrs. Aquino had
been at odds with President Gloria Arroyo and her supporters on efforts
to change the system of government from presidential to parliamentary.
Critics say the proposal would allow Mrs. Arroyo to remain in power
after her term expires next year. Senator Aquino's candidacy is seen
as aimed to stop such efforts in the future.
It is not clear
who will run against Aquino, although former president Joseph Estrada
who was ousted in 2001, has hinted he will join the race.
The Philippines holds national elections in May.