Pimentel cautions Padilla: I am the PDP-Laban chairman
MANILA, Philippines — Senate Minority Leader Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III on Monday cautions Senator Robin Padilla for mentioning former President Rodrigo Duterte as chair of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino – Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).
During the Senate committee on finance hearing, Padilla said that former President Rodrigo Duterte is PDP-Laban’s chairperson.
Pimentel interrupted Padilla’s inquiry on the judiciary officials as he stood firm on his party leadership.
“Sorry to be raising this, pero baka ma-rules of court kami sa (we may encounter rules of court in the) future. Senator Padilla mentioned a name as chairman of the PDP-Laban. That is not correct as far as this representation is concerned because I am the chairman of the PDP-Laban, the original PDP-Laban party,” he said.
“Just for the information, kasi meron yatang — ‘di ba merong (because there is a) provision sa (on the) rules of court that if something is stated in your presence and you do not react to it, might be, it can be, or might be taken against you,” he added.
Padilla immediately apologized to Pimentel.
“Ako po ay humihingi ng paumanhin sa atin pong minority leader… Gusto ko lang ipaalam din po sa ating minority, pasensya na po kasi alam ko po nadesisyunan na ng Supreme Court na ang PDP-Laban ay ano, pasensya na po kayo,” the neophyte senator told Pimentel.
(I am apologizing to our minority leader… I want to let our minority leader know. I’m sorry because I know the Supreme Court has decided. I’m sorry.)
“Wala po akong intensyon na makasagasa. Ako po ay sumusunod lamang. Pasensya na po minority leader, pasensya na po,” he added.
(I do not have any intention to run over someone. I’m sorry, minority leader, I’m sorry.)
Pimentel then corrected Padilla that the PDP-Laban chairmanship row had not reached the Supreme Court.
The PDP-Laban has been divided into two factions: one headed by Pimentel and one led by former Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, Duterte’s ally.
The infighting stemmed when former Senator Manny Pacquiao, a party member, challenged Duterte over his stance on maritime issues with China and his record on eradicating corruption.
During the May polls, the Commission on Elections recognized Cusi’s wing as the “true and official members” of the PDP-Laban party. —Christian Paul Dela Cruz, INQUIRER.net trainee
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