Villar refuses to sign resolution on Sotto’s continued Senate presidency
Updated @ 6:32 p.m., June 3, 2019, to add more quotes
MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Cynthia Villar has refused to sign a resolution supporting the continued leadership of Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III.
Villar, who is reportedly being eyed as a possible replacement of Sotto, even confronted Senators Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III and Manny Pacquiao for dragging her into their “rift” with Sotto.
“Bakit kelangang magpirmahan tayo? Bakit niyo ako sinasali sa away niyo? Bakit kayo ganyan?” Villar could be heard telling Pimentel and Pacquiao on the floor on Monday.
[Why do we have to sign this? Why are you getting me involved in your quarrel? Why are you like that?]
“Ayusin niyo ‘yung kapartido niyo. Huwag niyo akong idadamay sa away niyo,” she added.
[Get your party mate in line. Don’t drag me into your quarrel.]
Pimentel is president of the ruling PDP-Laban, which is chaired by President Rodrigo Duterte. Pacquiao is a party member of PDP-Laban.
Turning to Pacquiao, Villar said: “Kasi ikaw dinala mo kay Sotto ‘yung mga kapartido. Sabi niyo mag gu-good time lang kayo. Tapos bigla ng sinabi niyo na supportive sila kay Sotto.”
[You brought the party mates to Sotto. You said you we’re just having a good time. Then suddenly you said they were all supportive of Sotto.]
“Bakit ako pipirma dyan? Kung mapahamak ‘yung aking kapartido, ako’y nakapirma dyan? …Hihintayin ko na maayos si Pia at si Imee. ‘Di ba tama ‘yun?” she went on.
[Why should I sign that? What if my party mates get into trouble? I will wait for Pia and Imee to get settled in. Isn’t that just right?]
Villar was referring to Senators-elect Pia Cayetano and Imee Marcos. The three — Villar, Cayetano, and Marcos — all belong to the Nacionalista Party (NP).
It was Marcos who earlier disclosed an alleged move to push for Villar as new Senate president.
In a text message to Sotto, Marcos also claimed that it was Senator-elect Francis Tolentino who was egging Villar to challenge Sotto’s leadership.
Tolentino is also a member of PDP-Laban.
Pimentel then advised Villar that as NP head, she should also talk to Sotto.
“Eh hindi naman niya [Sotto] ako kinakausap,” Villar said. “Dinidiktahan niya ako…”
[He’s not talking to me. He’s dictating on me.]
(Editors: Julie Espinosa and Alexander T. Magno)
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