Sen. Grace Poe declares 2016 presidential bid

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Sen. Grace Poe announced her presidential bid on Wednesday, September 16, at the UP Bahay ng Alumni.

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) - It's final: Sen. Grace Poe is running for president in 2016.

She made the declaration at the University of the Philippines Bahay ng Alumni on Wednesday (September 16).

"Ako po si Grace Poe – Pilipino, anak, asawa, at ina. At sa tulong ng mahal na Diyos ay inaalay ko sa inyong lahat ang aking sarili sa mas mataas na paninilbihan bilang inyong pangulo," she said.

Poe's family was there, including her mother, Susan Roces, her husband, Neil Llamanzares, and her children.

A number of politicians were seen during the event, including Valenzuela Mayor Rex Gatchalian; Vice Mayor Francis Zamora, who is a Nacionalista Party member; San Juan Rep. Ronaldo Zamora, who is from the United Nationalist Party; Camarines Sur Gov. Miguel Villafuerte and his father L-Ray, who are both NP members.

Also read: Grace Poe lays down her platforms, vows to continue FPJ's dreams

Former National Security Adviser Roilo Golez, who earlier said he would give advice to Poe on issues of national security, transport, and other matters, was also there.

Former An Waray Rep. Florencio "Bem" Noel, who said he's a political friend and supporter of Poe's father Fernando Poe Jr., was also present.

Prior to the announcement, Poe had been making rounds in several vote-rich provinces, including Cebu and Pangasinan, for what she said was part of her public consultation.

Poe is the daughter of the late Fernando Poe Jr., who ran for president in 2004 but lost to Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

Poe is the current frontrunner in recent pre-election 2016 presidential surveys.

LP unfazed

The Liberal Party (LP) has fervently courted Poe to be LP standard bearer Mar Roxas's vice presidential running mate.

But with a resounding no from Poe as she announced her presidential bid, LP stalwarts who had nothing but praises to her in the past weeks suddenly said the party doesn't need her.

Transportation and Communication Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya, for one, said that Poe "is not a big loss" for LP, while Caloocan Rep. Edgar Erice, LP political and electoral affairs committee chairman, couldn't help reminding Poe of what the party did for her in her senatorial bid in 2013.

"Kasama namin sya nung 2013. We invested in her, pero iniwan nya kami," Erice said.

Erice was quick to clarify though, that LP respects Poe's decision to run for president.

Also read: Who is Grace Poe?