PDP-Laban Pacquiao faction replaces Duterte as party chairman
By Ella Dionisio
The PDP-Laban faction, led by Senator Manny Pacquiao, has elected Senator Koko Pimentel as its new chairman, replacing President Rodrigo Duterte.
In a text message to reporters, Ron Munsayac, the PDP-Laban Pacquiao faction's executive director, said the PDP-Laban National Council elected Pimentel as the new party chairman and former Eastern Samar Gov. Lutgardo Barbo as vice chairman.
Barbo replaced Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi as vice chairman.
''The President was not ousted. It happened that the term (of his position) is only for two years,'' Munsayac told dzBB, adding that Duterte and Cusi were elected in 2016.
Munsayac said the party convened its national council around 2 pm on Sunday.
"It was attended by our national and regional officers and national committee chairman led by Party President and our 'Pambansang Kamao' Senator Manny Pacquaio, who is currently airborne on his way home here," Munsayac said.
He added that they will release an official statement.
Pimentel has confirmed his appointment as the party's new chair.
As to the Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi's group, PDP-Laban Deputy Secretary General Melvin Matibag called the move as a "comedy".
"It’s a ‘comedy’. Senator Koko Pimentel has no position in the PDP Laban. He is irrelevant and he does not represent the party. His group are pretenders and are attention seekers," Matibag said.
"President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is the PDP Laban party chairman. He remains to be so and will continue to be so," he added.
Malacañang has yet to release a statement.
Last August 21, the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) said two sets of Sworn Information Update Statement (SIUS) are submitted by the PDP-Laban.DMS