Pimentel: Cusi-led group will defect PDP-Laban to whoever will win in the May 2022 presidential election

Partido ng Demokratikong Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) Chairman Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III on Wednesday predicted that the faction led by Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi will defect from the ruling political party and join whoever would win in the May 2022 presidential elections.

Pimentel, who leads one faction of the political party and is endorsing Senator Manny Pacquiao’s presidential bid, said he has actually told this forecast to Cusi during their past meetings in PDP-Laban.

Pimentel, son of the late Senator Aquilino Pimentel, Jr. who was one of the founders of the PDP-Laban party, reiterated that the Cusi-led faction—which is now endorsing the presidential candidacy of former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr.—are misusing the name of the political party, which he reiterated was established to oppose the Marcos dictatorship.

“They are misusing the name of the party, illegitimately using it. They are destroying the party to the ground. And I know what will happen after the elections. This group, or the leadership of this group, will definitely jump to the political party of the winner. Ganyan din po yung mangyayari dyan (That is what will happen),” Pimentel said in an interview over CNN Philippines’ The Source.

“That’s why the legitimate PDP-Laban will prepare for the long haul. After the elections we wil have to rebuild the party. This people are just doing some media spectacle for election purposes. Para lang mapansin ng mga kandidato (So they would be remembered by the candidate),” he pointed out.

“Kung makatyamba sila na yung kanilang sinusuportahan ay manalo, sana maalala sila. Yun lang ung purposes nila dyan. Kung di manalo ang manok nila. Tatalon yan sa partido ng kung sino man ang manalo. At yan po ang aming fearless forecast (if by chance the candidate they supports wins the election, they are hoping they would be remembered. That’s all their purpose here. If their bet fails to win, they will jump to the political party of the winning candidate. That is our fearless forecast),”said Pimentel.

Pimentel also said in the interview he can only “pity” Cusi and the faction he leads, considering Marcos, Jr. is already the fourth presidential candidate that they are endorsing.

The senator said Cusi’s group has obviously been trying to sell their team “as a formidable group kuno.”

“Yes, I pity them. What they did yesterday (Tuesday, March 22) was for media value, propaganda value. That’s why they made sure they would be well covered by the media. By the news organizations. But that is the only value of what they did,” he pointed out.

But for legitimate members of the party who already know the history of the PDP-Laban, what it stands for and fights for, Pimentel said they will prepare for the “rebuilding of the party.”

“For sure (they will abandon this group). I already told Secretary Cusi about that when we were having some of our meetings before. And I told them I know what will happen after the elections: ‘you will leave is, and I know on whose shoulder the rebuilding of the party would be on. It would be on my shoulder,” he narrated.

“Because kami naman ang (we are the ones) invested in the party. Blood sweat and tears, sacrifice, years, time and energy—iyan po ang aming nabigay (That is what we have spent and given to the party),” said Pimentel.