A group of PDP-Laban members from different parts of the country on Wednesday expressed their disdain towards party mate House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and questioned the mass oath-taking activities recently initiated by the ruling party.
“Una nang nag-reklamo ang mga kababayan natin, bakit ginagawa 'to ng ating mga opisyal ang mass oath taking na hindi naman po sinansang-ayunan ng ating partido sapagkat hindi natin kilala ang ating mga kasama,” PDP-Laban’s National Council chairman Rogelio "Ka Bic-Bic" Garcia said.
He was speaking before an assembly organized by the council as part of the 36th founding anniversary celebration held at the Quezon Memorial Circle.
Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PAC) Commissioner Greco Belgica at PDP Laban 36th founding anniversary celebration pic.twitter.com/XnvowgZc7d— M. Claire Layug (@MClaireLayug) February 28, 2018
Garcia cried foul that he and other members from Mindanao were not invited to the PDP-Laban’s anniversary celebration in a hotel in Makati City the day before.
"Noong ako'y tumawag sa kanila...ang sagot sa akin, lalong kayong mga tiga-Mindanao, hindi kayo iimbitahin lalong manggugulo kayo sa partido. Ang kapal ng ating kasamahan," he said.
In an ambush interview, Garcia said council members wished for Speaker Alvarez to be declared persona non grata in Mindanao.
"By declaring Speaker Pantaleon Alveras as persona non grata, it is that wish of all the members in the Mindanao council, because what he is doing is entirely against the provisions and the by laws of the PDP," Garcia said.
He was joined by other PDP-Laban officials from the Mindanao region, including Cesar Ledesma, one of the party’s founders, and Undersecretary Benito Ranque, who introduced themselves as "original" party members.
In separate speeches, council leaders claimed the thousands of new members sworn into the party did not undergo the traditional process for memberships in accordance to the party's Constitution and by laws.
Ledesma said members are first required to undergo a basic membership seminar, which Garcia claimed was not accomplished by the new party members.
"And if you decide to commit to the philoshophy and principles of the party, then you apply for membership, and the local councils, if they approve your application, we'll now accept you as members," Ledesma said.
"Hindi po process ng patido 'yung mass oath-taking even without benefit of the basic membership seminar ay magiging member ka na ng PDP. Illegitimate, po 'yan...anomalous process," he said.
In text message to GMA News Online, PDP-Laban Ronwald Munsayac later clarified that the party's leadership did not sanction the event at the QC Circle.
"Some of the organizers of this event have already been expelled from the Party," he added.
Munsayac said the matter will be forwarded to PDP-Laban's discipline committee led by its vice chairman Alfonso “Al” Cusi.
According to a report by GMA News' Raffy Tima on State of the Nation, Alvarez responded to the allegations against him.
"Matagal ko nang sinabi na may katok 'yan at matagal nang tinanggal sa PDP," the Speaker said. — BAP, GMA News