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Philippines VP files candidacy for presidential polls

Manila, Oct 7 (IANS) Maria Leonor Robredo, Vice President of the Philippines, on Thursday filed her certificate of candidacy hours after she officially announced that she will run for President in the May 2022 election.

Robredo, 56, submitted her certificate to the Commission on Elections with her daughters and left the poll body without announcing who her running-mate will be, reports Xinhua news agency.

"I will fight. We will fight. I offer myself as a candidate for the presidency in the 2022 elections," Robredo said in a news conference earlier.

The opposition coalition 1Sambayan endorsed Robredo to be its presidential candidate.

She had delayed her announcement after trying to forge a united opposition slate with other presidential contenders, but her efforts failed.

Popularly known as Leni, Robredo entered the national political spotlight after her husband, former Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo, died in a plane crash in 2012.

She stepped into the political arena in 2013, when she won a seat in the House of Representatives.

The other major contenders who have filed their certificates to officially contest the May 9, 2022, are Manila Mayor Francisco Domagoso; boxing icon-turned-politician Manny Pacquiao; Ferdinand Marcos Jr, the only son of late President Ferdinand Marcos; and Senator Panfilo Lacson.

Meanwhile, incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte has announced his retirement from politics, adding that he will not contest for Vice President in 2022 elections.

His former long-time aid and Senator Christopher Go, 47, has his candidacy for Vice President.

The upcoming polls will elect the President, Vice President, half of the 24-member Senate, members of the House of Representatives, and other local officials.

Candidates have until Friday to file their official certificates to contest the polls.