PHILIPPINE Senator Manny Pacquiao on Wednesday, December 2, was sworn in as the new president of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Laban ng Bayan (PDP-Laban), the political party of current President Rodrigo Duterte.
Meanwhile, House Speaker Lord Allan Velasco took his oath as the party’s new executive vice president during a “hybrid” fellowship night at Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar.
“We are not beholden to big businesses, foreign entities, nor vested interests, but only to the Filipino people. We are here to fight for the poor, the jobless, the homeless, the voiceless and the hopeless,” said Pacquiao.
He added, “This is what the PDP-Laban under Manny Pacquiao will stand for.”
The senator also stressed that the party must heed Duterte’s call for a more aggressive stance against corruption, describing it as a “cancer that has tormented our government for generations.”
According to Pacquiao, the party members must lead by example by shunning all forms of corruption.
“I am very angry with corrupt officials as well as the corrupt, curious government workers. They are stealing the people’s money, money that should be for programs and projects that will help our suffering kababayan,” he said.
Pacquiao replaced Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, who is now PDP-Laban’s executive vice chairman.
“Senator Koko Pimentel has passed on the practical day-to-day leadership of the Party to one with new, ‘modern’ ideas and one who has the time, energy, and boldness to prepare the Party for the 2022 national and local elections,” Ron Munsayac, PDP-Laban executive director, said in a message as reported by the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
To date, PDP-Laban has five senators, 58 congressmen, 43 governors, 22 vice-governors, 257 board members, 608 mayors, 541 vice-mayors, 4,081 councilors and 100,000 grassroots community leaders.