By Vanne Terrazola
Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos has apologized to Senate President Vicente Sotto III, and clarified that she was not part of any move to oust him from his post.
This was confirmed by Sotto on Saturday after Senator Panfilo Lacson bared in a radio interview that Marcos texted the Senate chief and “apologized” over the statements she made recently about the plans to challenge the current leadership.
Marcos admitted to the ANC last Thursday that there were plans to field Senator Cynthia Villar as Sotto’s replacement in the 18th Congress. She said she will also support Villar since they are allies in the Nacionalista Party (NP).
But Sotto said Marcos denied having participated in the supposed plots for his ouster.
“She dispelled the report that she was moving to oust me. She said her response was merely supportive of their party leader and she is not initiating any moves concerning the present Senate leadership,” he told The Manila Bulletin when asked for confirmation.
According to Lacson, Marcos said it was senator-elect Francis Tolentino who was “really” pushing for Villar to seek Senate presidency and challenge Sotto.
Sotto, however, said the Marcos did “not directly” indicate her support for him. He said he hopes to know from her when incumbent and incoming senators meet on Wednesday, June 5.
“If Sen. Cynthia does not seek the SP post, I think she will join us,” Sotto added.
Tolentino was reported to be planning the ouster of Sotto as Senate’s top leader amid disputes over committee chairmanships. The former presidential political adviser, who ranked ninth in the senatorial race, supposedly wants to handle six Senate committees, according to his partymate Senator Koko Pimentel.