THE RULING PDP-Laban party under President Rodrigo R. Duterte on Sunday announced that Senator Emmanuel “Manny” D. Pacquiao has been automatically expelled for filing his certificate for presidential candidacy under a different party, but the other faction led by the party founder’s son dismissed the pronouncement. 

Mr. Pacquiao on Friday filed his candidacy under the Progressive Movement for the Devolution of Initiatives (PROMDI), noting the party’s alliance with PDP-Laban and the People’s Champ Movement, a coalition he called the “MP3.” 

PDP-Laban Secretary General Melvin Matibag under the Duterte camp said the party’s constitution states that the filing by a member of a certificate of candidacy under another political party is grounds for automatic expulsion. “If that is not disloyalty, betrayal, and abandonment of PDP Laban, I don’t know what is.”  

Senator Aquilino “Koko” L. Pimentel III, chairman of the opposing group, denied the claim, saying that a resolution was made that allowed Mr. Pacquiao to use PROMDI in order to consolidate his support base and alliance partners.  

“The ‘issue’ being propagated by (Energy Secretary Alfonso G.) Cusi and Matibag is a figment of their imagination which they want to use for their own political propaganda,” said Mr. Pimentel via Viber.  

The legitimate PDP-Laban group will be decided upon by the Commission on Elections. — Alyssa Nicole O. Tan 

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