MANILA, Philippines—United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) secretary general Toby Tiangco on Thursday slammed Senator Aquilino Pimentel III for daring Vice President Jejomar Binay to choose between UNA and Partido ng Demokratikong Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).
“Drop the politics and put the country first,” said the opposition official in a statement.
The re-elected senator recently urged Binay, one of UNA’s three leaders, to choose which political party he would carry.
Pimentel would have run under UNA during the recently concluded midterm elections but allied himself with the Liberal Party-led Team PNoy instead after the opposition insisted on keeping his political nemesis, resigned senator Juan Miguel Zubiri, in its senatorial slate.
“If Senator Koko thinks that the first thing on his agenda as a re-elected senator is his standing in a political party, then he can go to the Comelec to file his grievance. Or he can bring it to the attention of the party leadership if he feels a need to do so,” Tiangco said.
The UNA official said he was surprised at Pimentel’s making such a statement just after the elections.
“I believe that Senator Koko and the Vice President have great visions for the party which they lead. But at the moment, politics should take a back seat,” Tiangco said.
He described Pimentel’s statement as being petty and urged that the senator to allow Binay to focus on his work as Vice President for now.
“This is the time for healing. A lot of people have no job. Let’s move forward since we are facing bigger challenges in rebuilding a nation,” he said.