Kiko Pangilinan
In a statement, Pangilinan said he handed his letter of resignation to LP chairperson Vice President Leni Robredo.
The STAR/Geremy Pintolo, File
Pangilinan quits as Liberal Party president after Otso Diretso defeat
( - May 21, 2019 - 10:59am

MANILA, Philippines (Update 3, 2:45 p.m.) — Minority Sen. Francis Kiko Pangilinan on Tuesday announced he has resigned as president of the Liberal Party, saying “he was taking full responsibility” for the defeat of opposition bets in the Senate race.

In a statement, Pangilinan said he handed his letter of resignation to Vice President Leni Robredo, who is also the Party chairperson.

Quezon City 6th District Rep. Kit Belmonte also resigned as LP secretary general, said Pangilinan.

"As campaign manager for the Otso Diretso slate, I was unable to ensure our victory in the elections and I therefore assume full responsibility for the outcome and hold myself primarily accountable for this defeat," Pangilinan said, adding his resignation will be effective June 30, 2019.

Partial tally of votes showed nine of President Rodrigo Duterte’s chosen senatorial candidates made it to the so-called “Magic 12.” Meanwhile, opposition candidates, most of whom already accepted defeat, are struggling to gain a seat.


In a statement, lawyer Barry Gutierrez, Rodredo's spokesperson, said the vice president rejected Panglinan and Belmonte's resignation.

"Much work remains to be done, and they will do it, together," Gutierrez said.

As of writing, the Commission on Elections has not proclaimed the winning senators.

Analysts at Fitch Solution had expected Duterte’s allies to sweep the Senate race, given that the Liberal Party has been “weakened considerably.”

“The once-dominant opposition Liberal Party has been weakened considerably following the defection of dozens of its members to the ruling PDP-Laban party, and is struggling to even field a 12-person roster, according to Vice President Leni Robredo,” they said in a Sept. 10, 2018 commentary.

Experts say the results of the midterm polls could bode well for policy continuity during Duterte’s remaining term, but could also weigh on the system of checks and balances in the country.

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