ALAIN Juppé has formally announced he wants to be the UMP’s Presidential candidate in 2017.
Mr Juppé – who has already held three of the top political jobs in France, prime minister, foreign minister and defence minister – made the announcement today in a blog post on his website.
The veteran politician, 69, who is mayor of Bordeaux, said he would stand in any primary elections, which he argued should be held in early 2016.
Mr Juppé’s decision comes as the UMP awaits word from former president Nicolas Sarkozy on whether he wants to run for President in 2017.
Speculation about Mr Sarkozy’s political future has been mounting recently. He has said that he will reveal his decision next month.
In his blog post, Mr Juppé - who currently heads the scandal-hit UMP alongside fellow former prime ministers François Fillon and Jean-Pierre Rafarin - said he recognised the numerous challenges confronting France.
He insisted that the President must be someone who instills confidence in the people to build a better future.
“That is why I have decided to be a candidate, at the appropriate time, in a future primary,” he wrote.