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Saturday, March 2, 2024

Comelec eyes to settle PDP-Laban row within March

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Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairperson Saidamen Pangarungan has called for a speedy resolution to the case involving which faction of the ruling party PDP-Laban must be recognized.

Comelec Commissioner George Garcia said in a television interview Wednesday Pangarungan had instructed whoever was assigned to write the resolution or judgment to expedite resolution of the case.

Garcia hoped the issue would be resolved within the month.

The ruling party is divided into the Cusi faction headed by Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi and outgoing President Rodrigo Duterte which has endorsed, through a resolution, the tandem of former Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and Mayor Inday Sara Duterte-Carpio, and the Pimentel faction headed by Senator Aquilino Pimentel III and presidential candidate Senator Manny Pacquiao—with both vying for Comelec recognition.

Pimentel slammed the Cusi group’s endorsement of Marcos Jr., saying that it proved that they were “total strangers” to the party, which was founded in 1982 to resist the strongman rule of Ferdinand Marcos Sr., Bongbong’s father.

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In September 2021, the Cusi faction filed a petition before the poll body to declare Pacquiao and Pimentel as illegal representatives of the party.

Pimentel urged the Comelec to dismiss the petition filed by the Cusi faction, which he called “usurpers.”

According to Garcia, “The resolution of this controversy is so important because there are other certain implications or collaterals that will be resolved because of the resolution of this controversy.”

Garcia, a former election lawyer whose previous clients included Marcos Jr. and another presidential candidate, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, also asked political parties to ensure that there were no “loopholes” in their constitution and by-laws before they file their petition for accreditation before the Comelec.

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