Butch Abad ditches senatorial bid

Posted at 06/29/12 3:04 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Budget Secretary Butch Abad on Friday said he will not run for senator in the 2013 election.

Speaking to ANC, Abad said President Aquino told him to stay in the Cabinet as head of the budget department.

"The President has told me to stay put here. I will be staying here. I have no plans of running for the Senate. Abad has no name recall in the national electorate," he said.

Abad said the Liberal Party is still finalizing its senatorial ticket for the 2013 election. “It's shaping up and I think we have a good lineup,” he said.

Among the potential candidates are former senator Ramon "Jun" Magsaysay Jr., Aurora Rep. Juan Edgardo Angara, Quezon 4th District Rep. Erin Tañada, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) chairman Joel Villanueva, former Akbayan party-list Rep. Risa Hontiveros and re-electionist Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV.

Abad said the administration party is also interested in adopting Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III after he bolted the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) coalition over differences with senatorial bet Juan Miguel Zubiri.

He also said the LP will have to decide on whether it will field former senator and current Muntinlupa Rep. Rodolfo Biazon or his son, Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon, in the Senate race.