MANILA — The camp of Panfilo Lacson is adamant that some operators in the camp of Leni Robredo have succeeded in stealing vice presidential bet Tito Sotto to pair him up with the country’s so-called “Reyna ng Lugaw.”

SP Tito Sotto and Sen. Kiko

Lacson earlier confirmed his resignation as chairman and standard-bearer of Partido Reporma even as former Cong. Ashley Acedillo, party spokesman also resigned afterward.

“Kawawa naman si Ping. Dahil lang sa pagiging ambisyosa ni Leni, nasira tuloy ang samahan nila sa Reporma,” said one of Lacson’s local leaders based in Cavite.

The Partido Reporma is now allegedly endorsing Robredo as Sotto’s tandem.

Meanwhile, a source ventured that Sotto’s decision to dump Lacson came after he realized that the latter has no chance of winning in the scheduled May 9 elections, and pairing him with Robredo could somehow give him a fighting chance of stealing the vice presidency from his main rival Inday Sara Duterte.

Robredo, on the other hand, had no qualms about dumping her original partner Kiko Pangilinan who she reportedly described as a “very weak VP candidate” while she was convinced that Sotto has fair chances of winning over Inday Sara.

“Ganyan talaga ka-obsessed si Leni na talunin si BBM kaya kahit ibenta niya ang sarili niya sa demonyo ay gagawin niya at wala rin siyang pakialam kung masaktan ang kalooban ni Kiko at iba pang tao na tumutulong sa kanya,” a Leni camp insider who requested that his name be withheld.

Reports earlier surfaced saying that emissaries from the Robredo camp have approached Lacson to urge him to withdraw from the presidential race and let Sotto become Robredo’s running mate.

Lacson repeatedly averred that he is not withdrawing his bid and confirmed meeting with Leni’s “emissaries”.

It was gathered that it was former House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez who is Partido Reporma’s national president who interceded for Sotto’s jump to Leni’s camp.

Lacson had always run as an independent candidate since he entered politics after retiring as PNP chief until he was wooed into accepting the Partido Reporma chairmanship.

Political observers commented that Lacson may have pure intentions to serve the country however, he is pulling Sotto down when he already has to contend with Presidential Daughter Inday Sara Duterte, the leading vice-presidential bet.

Alvarez allegedly has an ax to grind with Sara who was reportedly instrumental in his ouster as House Speaker in 2018.

He was removed from the post following an alleged Sara-manipulated coup d’etat that vaulted former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo up the top post in the House of Representatives.

Witnesses said the Robredo camp played on Alvarez’s resentment in stealing Sotto.

“Grabe talaga ang pulitika. Ang dudumi nila. Ngayong sinulot nina Leni si Senator Ping, parang naalala ko tuloy iyong isyu sa kanya na mang-aagaw ng asawa,” one of Lacson’s friends said.

Earlier, Robredo received flak on various social media platforms, condemning her alleged illicit relationship with a former lawmaker.

“Magnanakaw na ng boto, magnanakaw pa ng asawa!” a social media attack on Robredo said.

Aside from Sotto, other groups in the Robredo camp are also pushing for her tandem with Inday Sara Duterte.

Duterte has already pooh-poohed the sinister plan after she issued a statement saying that Partido Federal ng Pilipinas standard-bearer Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos, Jr. is her only running mate and she has no plans of breaking up their tandem.

Robredo’s silence on the issue has triggered accusations that she is condoning the proposal which paints an image of being a political whore who will agree to partner with all and sundry as long as they could further her political ambition. (ai/mtvn)

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