Cebu governor latest to resign from PDP

Cebu governor latest to resign from PDP

Cebu governor latest to resign from PDP

Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia —photo from Gov. Gwen Garcia FB page

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia is the latest among elected officials who left the once dominant Partido Demokratiko Pilipino (PDP), following the resignation of at least 60 officials in Negros Occidental province.

READ: Mass PDP resignation in Negros seen


Garcia cited the complaint filed against her by suspended Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, PDP vice president in the Visayas, as the reason for quitting the party.


Earlier, Bacolod City Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez led at least 60 PDP members in Negros Occidental who tendered their irrevocable resignation, saying they were no longer comfortable staying with the party.

The (Rodrigo) Duterte-led PDP was formerly known as PDP-Laban. However, during a national council meeting held in April, officials decided to drop the “Laban” from the party’s official name.

READ: PDP drops Laban from name, endorses 2025 bets

Garcia, in a letter to PDP president and Palawan Rep. Jose Alvarez on May 28, said the cases filed against her by Rama before the Office of the President questioned her “judgment” and integrity.

“While I am confident in the legality and ethical soundness of my actions, the resulting situation, including Mayor Rama’s call for my suspension, has made continued association with the party untenable,” a part of the governor’s letter read.

Rama filed an administrative complaint against Garcia for supposedly meddling in the affairs of Cebu City, a highly urbanized city independent of the province when she stopped the construction of the stations for the Cebu Bus Rapid Transit Project project in Cebu City.


Rama asked President Marcos to issue a preventive suspension order against Garcia and to hold her liable for disrupting the project.

Garcia stressed that leaving the party was in the best interest of both herself and the PDP, highlighting the importance of upholding her personal and professional values while avoiding any actions that could harm the party.

“Despite this regrettable outcome, I remain grateful for the opportunity to have contributed to PDP-Laban’s mission during my time with the party. I wish you and all members continued success in your endeavors,” she added.

Since 2016, members of the One Cebu party, where Garcia is the founder and president emeritus, have supported the PDP, chaired by former President Rodrigo Duterte.

Garcia helped deliver more than 1.1 million votes from Cebu for Duterte in 2016. In the 2022 presidential election, Cebu gave Mr. Marcos, the eventual winner, 1.5 million votes.

Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes also resigned from the party on Wednesday, saying his decision was driven by his desire to keep the city under Garcia’s One Cebu party.

Lack of consultation

“As the mayor of Mandaue City, my priority is to align with initiatives that promote and serve our community’s best interests,” he said.

In Negros Occidental, Benitez said his group decided to leave PDP, although they had yet to decide which party to join. Among those who left the group were seven other mayors, five vice mayors and several councilors.

Benitez, who earlier resigned as chair of PDP in Negros Occidental, said many of their members were not even invited to any of the party’s gatherings and meetings.

Mayor Marxlen dela Cruz of Don Salvador Benedicto said they wanted to remain in support of the administration of President Marcos, although the decision on which national party they would align with had yet to be made.

Lawyer Jesus Villanueva Hinlo, PDP deputy secretary general for the Visayas and Negros Occidental Council president, earlier announced that they were fielding former Victorias City Mayor Francis Frederick Palanca against reelectionist Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson in the 2025 elections.

But the decision was allegedly made without consulting PDP members.

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The majority of PDP members in Negros belong to the United Negros Alliance-Love Negros coalition that is supporting Lacson.

TAGS: Gwendolyn Garcia, PDP, PDP-Laban

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