President Benigno S. Aquino III presides over the Cabinet Meeting at the Aguinaldo State Dining Room of the Malacañan Palace on Tuesday (December 10). (MNS photo)

President Benigno S. Aquino III presides over the Cabinet Meeting at the Aguinaldo State Dining Room of the Malacañan Palace on Tuesday (December 10). (MNS photo)

MANILA, May 1 (Mabuhay) – Saying corrupt officials caused poverty in the country, President Benigno Aquino III on Thursday urged the public to vote for leaders who will continue his administration’s reforms.

Ang pakiusap ko po kung naniniwala kayo na tama ang ating ginagawa, kung ayaw ninyong mabalewala ang maganda nating nasimulan sa tuwid na daan, piliin natin ang mga susunod na pinunong magpapatuloy at higit pang magpapayabong sa ating mga naipunlang reporma,” Aquino said during his speech at the Integrated Micro-Electronics, Inc. Compound in Laguna.

The President’s remark came following a Pulse Asia survey conducted last month among 1,200 Filipino voters showed that 40 percent of Filipinos will choose Vice President Jejomar Binay as president if elections were to be held now.

Binay has a significant lead among other potential presidential candidates, with the second placer, Senator Grace Poe, getting the nod of 15 percent of the survey respondents.

Interior Secretary Mar Roxas, who has earlier been identified by administration officials as the ruling Liberal Party (LP)’s bet for the 2016 presidential race, came in fifth place, with the support of 6 percent of the respondents.

Aquino, who is also LP chairman, has repeatedly refused to name his 2016 bet.

On Thursday, however, he urged voters to choose leaders who will continue what his administration started.

Piliin natin ang karapatdapat upang maging permanente ang malawakang transpormasyong tinatamasa ng ating lipunan,” said.

He likewise bashed corrupt officials, whom he said were the root of the country’s poverty problems.

Dahil sa mga pinunong inuna o inuuna ang sariling interes matagal tayong nasadlak sa malubhang kahirapan at katiwalian… hanggan sa nagkaisa nga po at nagsama-samang nanindigan ang mga Pilipino para sa pagbabago,” he said.  (MNS)