He said his choice for successor is Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III, who reportedly enjoys the support of at least 15 senators.
Senate PRIB/Joseph Vidal
Pimentel’s top choice for replacement is Sotto
Paolo Romero (The Philippine Star) - May 13, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III is not bothered by talks of his being removed by his colleagues, which can happen when Congress resumes session next week.

Pimentel does not want to rush what is widely seen as the inevitable change in leadership in the Senate, saying it should be a “multi-step process” that should “be open to all members of the majority (bloc).”

He said his choice for successor is Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III, who reportedly enjoys the support of at least 15 senators.

“We in the majority bloc are close, we’ve a good teamwork and Sen. Sotto and I also have good teamwork,” Pimentel told dwIZ, adding there are “many factors” that should be considered on the matter.

“If there’s anybody who will replace me, if I will be replaced, my top seed would be Senator Sotto,” he said.

Pimentel and Sotto were expected to hold a private meeting last night to thresh out some issues between them.

The change in the Senate presidency from Pimentel to Sotto has been privately discussed in the chamber, owing to a supposed previous agreement between the two that they would divide the term of leadership of the second regular session of Congress.

Pimentel said he preferred that his succesor would remain Senate president until after June 30, 2019, or after the members of the chamber have assumed office so there will be no vacancy in the top post.

He admitted he would be busy in the coming weeks as he is seeking reelection and his work as president of the PDP-Laban would pile up as the 2019 senatorial and local elections approach.

The matter of Sotto taking over the helm of the Senate was discussed during the birthday dinner of Sen. Juan Miguel Zubiri in his residence in Makati City.

Nine senators were present at the event, including Sotto.

Some of the senators present said they agreed to give Pimentel a graceful exit.

AQUILINO “KOKO” PIMENTEL III VICENTE SOTTO III
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