MANILA - A Catholic bishop announced El Shaddai leader Brother Mike Velarde is abandoning his "long-shot" bid for the presidency, an report published online stated Monday.
The lack of support from El Shaddai followers is the main reason for the withdrawal, Bishop Teodoro Bacani was quoted by a report posted at the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) news Web site.
The report said Velarde's followers are not keen on the plan, saying they would rather that he stay as their pastor.
"He's not getting positive responses. El Shaddai members want him to stay in his mission (as pastor)," Bacani was quoted as saying.
In the first place, Bacani said, Velarde did not directly declare he is running for the presidency, and instead said he is "consulting" his followers.
Bacani also said that he is "convinced" Velarde is "really not serious" in running in 2010.
"Lately, we no longer hear him say anything about it (his political plan). Even before he didn't directly say that he's running," the bishop was quoted as saying.
"I believe he's getting the sentiments of the people already," he said.