By Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News
Oct. 28, 2014
MANILA – President Aquino effectively ended speculations that he might run for a second term if the Constitution is amended and term limits are lifted.
Speaking at an open forum with members of the Semiconductor and Electronics Industries in the Philippines (SEIPI), Aquino said that running for a second term “is not the right solution” and instead urged people to vote for the “right candidates” for reforms to continue.
“With regard to how do we sustain this after 2016, then perhaps I will vote for the right candidate. If I can also ask you also to discern properly as to whom is extolling populist sentiments with no substance as opposed to that which not only says the right things but whom you can trust to deliver the same,” he said.
“At the end of the day, again, I have to reemphasize this. This is really a collective effort. There are some quarters that are saying I should try and go for a second term. I don’t think that’s the right solution. We all have a time card in this world and we have to prepare for the eventuality of being called to meet our maker. So there has to be that continuation of people of like mind who will deliver on the promises that are real and not just self-serving or nice or pleasant to hear,” Aquino said.
The President was being asked specifically about his administration’s program for education when he spoke of the qualities that voters should look for in his successor.
Aquino earlier said in a TV interview that he may try to change the Constitution and serve a second term in office, a stunning announcement in a nation haunted by dictatorship.
The 1987 Constitution restricts presidents to serving a single term of six years, designed to stop a repeat of dictator Ferdinand Marcos’s 20-year reign that ended in a People Power uprising in 1986.
Aquino said he was considering the highly controversial move because he wanted to ensure his political reforms did not end with the conclusion of his first term in office.
Nevertheless, the President emphasized that he had made no definite plans to try and stay in power for 12 years. With Agence France-Presse