MANILA – Sen. Vicente “Tito” Sotto III was likely to remain as the Senate president in the 18th Congress with the chairmanships of almost all the Senate committees already settled.
Following the majority caucus of Sen. Manny Pacquiao on Wednesday, Sotto said he assumed to get the majority’s nod to keep the Senate presidency.
“I assume we did,” Sotto said. “(The incumbents and senators-elect) agreed on a 95 percent of the committee chairmanships. Just one or two committees na lang.”
Among those who attended the caucus were senators-elect Christopher “Bong” Go, Ronald dela Rosa, Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr., Manuel “Lito” Lapid, Imee Marcos, Grace Poe, Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara and Nancy Binay.
Aside from Sotto and Pacquiao, present incumbent senators were Juan Miguel Zubiri, Ralph Recto, Sherwin Gatchalian, Richard Gordon and Joel Villanueva with outgoing senators Gregorio Honasan and Loren Legarda.
Senators Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, Pia Cayetano, Panfilo Lacson and Cynthia Villar were not present during the meeting.
Sotto said he had a separate meeting with Partido Demokratiko Pilipino – Lakas ng Bayan senators-elect Go, dela Rosa and Tolentino to submit a list of their preferred committees.
“Clarifications lang on some issues,” Sotto said. “I will sort it out then submit to them later. I made them write down on paper that I gave them their top three preferences.” /PN