PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — Ali Atienza on Thursday conceded the race for mayor in Manila to Alfredo Lim.
Ali, the son of incumbent mayor Lito Atienza, made the announcement after emerging from a meeting with Lim at the Diamond Hotel.
“I would like to thank my supporters and those who believed in me but I feel that it is time to respect the will of Manila voters,” he said.
He said that in the quick count conducted by his camp, the 200,000 or so votes he garnered would not be enough to overhaul Lim’s 80,000-vote lead.
“It is still a victory for me—a novice going up against a veteran—to have received such overwhelming support,” Ali said. “I think that this is proof that many Manileños still believe in the Buhayin ang Maynila program and the need for urban renewal and development to improve their lives.”
Lim, a former mayor, lauded his rival for his sportsmanship and called the concession a “magnanimous” gesture.
“The electoral process is a reflection of the will of the people,” Lim said. “I only hope that I can live up to their expectations. I also hope that all of us who participated in this election can forget the past and continue to work for the people in the highest interest of Manila.”
Mayor Atienza said he was “grateful that in the end the elections were peaceful.”
He said he has offered to help Lim. “We both love this city. I urge everyone to put aside their differences and work for this City which we love,” Atienza said.
Ali said he has instructed his lawyers to drop plans to file a case against Lim’s camp over the alleged break-in at Ali’s satellite campaign office on Tuesday.