Pimentel denies factions in PDP-Laban amid word war with Alvarez

Camille Elemia
Pimentel denies factions in PDP-Laban amid word war with Alvarez

Ben Nabong

'No, walang factions. Nagtutuksuhan lang kami,' claims Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III on the word war between him and Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez

MANILA, Philippines – Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III downplayed the word war between him and his party mate, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, saying there are “no factions” in the ruling party.

Pimentel claimed he and Alvarez are “just teasing” each other. Pimentel is the president of PDP-Laban while Alvarez is the secretary-general.

“No. Walang (no) factions. We will all enjoy the birthday party of Speaker in Davao/Tagum. We are good friends. Nagtutuksuhan lang kami (We’re just teasing each other),” the Senate leader told Rappler when asked about it. The House leader is set to celebrate his birthday on January 10.

Alvarez earlier slammed the Senate leadership for being “slow” in passing legislation. Pimentel hit back and told Alvarez that the Senate is the “critical chamber” in Congress.

Aside from this, the two have other notable differences. Alvarez recently raised a possible no-elections (no-el) scenario in 2019, which Pimentel opposed.

“So dapat ipaliwanag ng mabuti ni Speaker ‘yung scenario niya ’cause hindi ko ‘yan scenario (Speaker must explain his scenario because that is not my scenario),” Pimentel earlier told reporters.

Alvarez has also floated his own set of PDP-Laban senatorial candidates in 2019 – some of whom include controversial sexy singer and now Communications Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson and Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque.

Recent pre-election surveys, however, show that Alvarez’s bets are not included in the so-called Magic 12. – Rappler.com

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Camille Elemia

Camille Elemia is Rappler's lead reporter for media, disinformation issues, and democracy. She won an ILO award in 2017. She received the prestigious Fulbright-Hubert Humphrey fellowship in 2019, allowing her to further study media and politics in the US. Email camille.elemia@rappler.com