Page last updated at 14:53 GMT, Wednesday, 16 September 2009 15:53 UK

Arroyo 'not in presidential race'

Gilberto Teodoro
Gilberto Teodoro, 45, is a Harvard-educated lawyer

The governing coalition in the Philippines has named its candidate for next year's presidential election - defence secretary Gilberto Teodoro.

The announcement ends any speculation that the current president, Gloria Arroyo, might attempt to run again.

One of Mr Teodoro's main challengers will be his second cousin, Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino.

Mr Aquino is the son of the former Philippine president, Corazon Aquino, who died last month.

The late president became a democracy icon for leading the revolt that toppled Ferdinand Marcos.

Contenders in place

In the past few months, opposition parties had voiced concern that President Gloria Arroyo might try to change the constitution and stay in power beyond her current six-year term.

She is due to step down in June 2010 after serving more than nine years in office.

But Wednesday's announcement by the Lakas-Kampi-CMD coalition effectively rules out this possibility.

The main contenders to replace her now appear to be Mr Teodoro, Mr Aquino, former president Joseph Estrada and billionaire property developer Senator Manuel Villar.

Mr Teodoro, 45, is from the wealthy, well-established Cojuanco clan which has long been split on ideological and business grounds.

He entered national politics in 1998 and served as the elected representative of Tarlac - as two uncles, a great uncle, his great-grandfather and his mother did before him.

The seat is currently occupied by his wife.

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