Ex-Speaker Alvarez quits Duterte's PDP-Laban
Former House Speaker and Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez on Sunday announced his irrevocable resignation as the Secretary-General of President Rodrigo Duterte's PDP-Laban (Partido Demokratiko Pilipino?Lakas ng Bayan).
In a statement, Alvarez said he resigned from the Party because he intends to commit and pursue a voter’s education campaign for Filipinos given the importance of the 2022 elections.
“Unfortunately, serving as a ranking officer and member of PDP-Laban while simultaneously handling this advocacy may be misconstrued by critics as politicking by the Party presently in power,” he said.
The lawmaker also announced that he accepted the offer of former Secretary Renato de Villa to lead, as Chairman, and revive the Reporma Party.
Reforma is a non-mainstream Party not affiliated with any personality reportedly seeking the Presidency.
“This way, the voter’s education campaign can proceed, and rightly be perceived, as politically neutral without risking possible backlash against PDP-Laban,” Alvarez said.
Alvarez thanked PDP-Laban’s President, Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, for allowing him to serve as the Secretary-General of PDP-Laban for almost five years.
He also thanked the Party for its support during the 2016 and 2019 elections.
“The Party’s assistance for those campaigns that led to historic electoral victories cannot be understated,” he added.
Alvarez sought Pimentel's understanding as he was constrained to tender his irrevocable resignation from his position and membership in PDP-Laban effective immediately.
Further, he strongly appreciated the Party’s efforts in bringing to the attention of the nation the importance of empowering local governments as a prerequisite for a strong republic.
House Speaker Lord Allan Velasco, who is also a member of the PDP-Laban, said he respects the decision of Alvarez.
Alvarez became the House Speaker in 2016 and was ousted in 2018 after he allegedly criticized presidential daughter Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio for forming Hugpong ng Pagbabago, which is a regional party aligned with PDP-Laban.
He was replaced by then-Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
Last year, President Rodrigo Duterte apologized to Alvarez for his removal. Ella Dionisio/DMS