Pimentel: Duterte in PDP-Laban assembly shows he’s following Cusi’s lead
MANILA, Philippines — The attendance of President Rodrigo Duterte in the “unauthorized” meeting and assembly organized by some members of the ruling PDP-Laban party would mean he is following the lead of Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi.
This was according to Senator Koko Pimentel, PDP-Laban’s executive vice-chairman, who renewed his calls for the party members not to attend the event on July 16 and 17.
“That the President, President Duterte, now follows the lead of Secretary Cusi as far as the party is concerned. That would be the meaning of that,” Pimentel said in an interview with The Source when asked what message will be sent to party members should the President attend the assembly.
Duterte is the chairman of the party.
Pimentel said PDP-Laban is a party of ideology and rules and not a personality-based party.
“Our chairman, who happens to be the president of the Philippines, is a very charismatic person and has a very huge following and very popular so those are facts about him,” Pimentel said.
“But pagdating sa partido, when you can for an important meeting, you do not keep the party president (Senator Manny Pacquiao) blind of the details of the event… There are rules to follow so if the most popular person in the party will attend the meeting which we have not recognized, it does not change the fact that we still do not recognize that meeting,” he added.
The infighting in the PDP-Laban party seems to be far from over. Two factions now appear to be forming—the group of party president Pacquiao and the group of party vice-chairperson Cusi.
It has come to a point where Pacquiao expelled Cusi and two others for allegedly violating provisions of the party’s constitution “by showing allegiance to a political party apart from PDP-Laban.”
In a resolution dated July 3, Pacquiao said Cusi supposedly admitted that he is open to the candidacy of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio as president, and President Duterte as vice president.
This, despite Duterte-Carpio not being a member of PDP-Laban and currently, sits as the chairman of the regional party Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP).