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Did Pacquiao vote for Lopez? ‎Doubts linger as ballot remains secret

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Did Senator Manny Pacquiao really want Gina Lopez confirmed as Environment Secretary?

Questions are swirling around Pacquiao’s vote on Lopez’s appointment after she was rejected by the Commission on Appointments.

Pacquiao chairs the environment and natural resources panel which deliberated on Lopez’s confirmation.

During the session of the full commission Wednesday (May 3) at the Senate, Pacquiao said it was with “sadness in my heart” that he was announcing the
rejection of Lopez’s appointment.

“To you Gina Lopez, my supposed Environment Secretary, I salute you. Take this turmoil in your life today as a challenge to strive for more. The DENR post is not the end of your career, only the beginning,” he said.

The results of the voting were not disclosed, although the panel voted 16-8 against Lopez.

While it appeared from his statement that Pacquiao did vote in favor of confirming Lopez, there were sources who claimed he didn’t.

Those who confirmed to have voted for confirming Lopez’s appointment were Senators Vicente Sotto III, Loren Legarda, JV Ejercito, Francis Pangilinan, Franklin Drilon, Ralph Recto and Bam Aquino.

That means 16 other members of the panel voted against her, namely: Senators Alan Peter Cayetano, Panfilo Lacson, Gregorio Honasan and Juan Miguel Zubiri, and Representatives Benhur Saalimbangon, Joel Almario, Antonio Floirendo Jr., Wes Gatchalian, Roy Loyola, Rosenda Ann Ocampo, Josephine Sato, Ronaldo Zamora, Rodolfo Albano III, Abraham Tolentino, Julieta Cortuna and Jerry Treñas.