Pacquiao meets with Sotto amid rift with top PDP-Laban officials

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‘ARE WE EXPECTING BIGGER PROBLEMS IN POWER SUPPLY?’ Sen. Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao poses this question during a hybrid plenary session, Wednesday, June 2, 2021, following the power outages that hit some parts of Luzon Tuesday, June 1, 2021. Pacquiao, in a privilege speech, asks if the country has sufficient supply to prevent further power shortages. Noting that it is the ordinary people, particularly those working and studying from home, who were affected by “brownouts,” he urged the Department of Energy (DOE) to address the problem immediately. “Are we expecting bigger problems pertaining to power supply? Have we done enough preparations for the surge in power supply demand this summer? This is a recurring problem, Mr. President. We cannot rely on the same strategies to solve this problem on the rapidly growing demand for power supply. We need to innovate. We need to secure renewable energy sources,” Pacquiao said. (Joseph Vidal/Senate PRIB)

Amid his worsening rift with officials of the ruling political party, Senator Manny Pacquiao and Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto 3rd recently held talks that may be related to Pacquiao possibly joining the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC) that Sotto chairs.

Pacquiao is currently the president of the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Laban ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).

The Pacquiao and Sotto meeting was reported just as Mayor Luis “Chavit” Singson of Narvacan, Ilocos Sur formally joined the NPC. Singson has been known as a close associate of Pacquiao and is always part of the boxer’s close entourage whenever he fights abroad.

A national news daily reported that the talks between Pacquiao and Sotto were about “where the country was headed, how the country will be run in the future and whether they can solve its problems.”

Pacquiao has never been muted about his ambitions to run for president in 2022.

However, Pacquiao’s differences with leading PDP-Laban officials like President Rodrigo Duterte who is the chairman and vice chairman Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, is worsening.

To recall, Pacquiao opposed the holding of the PDP-Laban national assembly in Cebu last May 31, where the party adopted a resolution urging Duterte to run for vice president in 2022.

Pacquiao is now calling for a boycott of the July 17 meeting of the party.

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