CEBU (UPDATE) — Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday secured another endorsement in the presidential race: This time, from supporters of Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso in the Visayas.
Nick Malazarte, who heads the Visayas chapter of Ikaw Muna (IM) Pilipinas, said his group is now backing Robredo's bid for Malacañang.
“The contest narrows to the two: Ferdinand [Bongbong] Marcos Jr., and Leni Robredo and it is practical to shift because our primordial concern is the clear and imminent danger of the Marcoses getting back in power," he said in a press briefing.
Their shift comes as Domagoso's camp has also been wooing the backing of other candidates' supporters, noting that surveys show he is the number one second-choice presidential aspirant in the May elections.
Malazarte disclosed his counterparts in Luzon and Mindanao were also on board in switching support from Domagoso to Robredo.
“We don’t want a resurgence. The only vehicle to stop the resurgence is VP Leni, who is doing very well in the surveys,” he said.
ABS-CBN News is reaching out to Domagoso's camp for a comment.
The multi-sectoral group also urged supporters of Senators Panfilo "Ping" Lacson and Manny Pacquiao to back Robredo's presidential bid.
“Do some introspection because we have limited time. She is the only candidate right now on the horizon,” Malazarte said.
He said IM Pilipinas-Visayas would mobilize its volunteers to conduct house-to-house campaign in support of Robredo.
The national convenors of Ikaw Muna Pilipinas said they are monitoring the developments in the Visayas.
"While we fully respect the decision of our Visayas chapter being volunteers themselves, we at the national leadership have yet to arrive at our decision," Elmer Argaño, secretary-general of Ikaw Muna Pilipinas, said in a statement.
He also noted the importance of preventing a resurgence of the Marcoses.
"As the writing on the wall is crystal clear that a resurgence of the Marcoses is imminent, unless a new tack is arrived at by all non-Marcos forces, what is important for us is how to avert our going back in time, rather than move forward as a nation," said Argaño.
On Monday, over 12,000 doctors also expressed support to the tandem of Robredo and her running mate Sen. Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan.
The duo are the only candidates who have “genuine concern” for Filipinos with clear platforms to address the COVID-19 pandemic, the group Doctors for Leni said.
— With a report from Annie Perez