Boy Abunda reacts to calls to run in 2016
TV host Boy Abunda. ABS-CBN/Screengrab
TV host not closing doors on politics
MANILA - Supporters of Boy Abunda have taken online to urge him to run for public office in 2016, but for the TV host, seeking election may have to wait several more years.
Dubbed "Abunda 2016," the campaign was set up as early as March this year and has an active presence on social networking sites Facebook and Twitter.
"This campaign is about overcoming mediocrity, embracing excellence, and changing the face of Philippine politics," the campaign says on it Facebook page.
"There are many ways to serve the country. Ours is to encourage a man, whom we believe will be a great leader and public servant, to run for office," its mission statement reads.
In a phone interview with ABS-CBNnews.com, Abunda said he has no involvement in the campaign but admitted he is aware of it.
While he described its intent as "very good," the TV host said it will not be the lone deciding factor in his political plans -- if any.
Asked directly if he will join the upcoming elections, Abunda said: "I am not shy. If I have interest in anything, I will say it. There is no stopping me from saying what I want."
"This is definitive: I will not run in 2016," he stressed.
Abunda noted that anyone who is planning to run for office, even if unannounced, would have preparations in place as early as now. This would be impossible in his case, Abunda said, citing his ongoing projects with ABS-CBN.
Abunda, who inked a two-year contract with the network in April, is currently the host or a co-host of four programs -- "Aquino & Abunda Tonight," "The Buzz," "The Bottomline with Boy Abunda," and "Inside the Cinema Circle."
With the exception of "Aquino & Abunda Tonight," which airs weeknights on primetime, Abunda's programs are aired weekly.
Aside from his TV shows, Abunda is also busy with studies for his doctoral degree in social development at the Philippine Women's University. He is aiming to defend his dissertation before September.
On top of these, Abunda stressed that his foremost priority remains his mother, Lesing, who he earlier said has been battling dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
Despite being definite about not running in 2016, Abunda said he is not closing his doors on a career in politics.
For one, he said he may consider taking up an appointed position, should the opportunity offer itself. This would not be new for Abunda. In 2010, he was reportedly considered for the position of tourism secretary.
Abunda added that if he does run for office beyond 2016, it will not be for a legislative post. He said he is putting more weight on the "possibility" of seeking the gubernatorial seat in his home province of Eastern Samar.
For now, Abunda said that as far nation-building is concerned, he lives by the famous saying: "You don't need public office to do public service."