With 10 months for the elections, Bayani Fernando, one of the most popular members of President Gloria Arroyo team, has announced his intention to run for the post of vice-president. "I have decided to run as vice president," Fernando told reporters Tuesday evening.

Fernando, who currently heads the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said he would like to be the running mate of Arroyo should she decide to recall her decision not to be a candidate in the May 2004 elections, when Filipinos will chose their next president, vice-president, 12 senators and district congressional representatives, among others.

"Even if the ruling Lakas (People Power) Party does not pick me or in case the president decides to make good her decision not to be a candidate, I'll run on my own," he said.

Although several politicians such as Senators Raul Roco, Panfilo Lacson and businessman Eduardo Cojuangco have announced their plans for the 2004 presidential campaign, Fernando is so far the only public figure who had made public his plans to run in the category of vice-president.

He said there have been many offers from other political parties for him to run under their banner but he has not accepted any.