MANILA (UPDATED) - Former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has joined the administration party PDP-Laban.
Arroyo, who is on her last term as the representative of the 2nd district of Pampanga, took her oath Wednesday before the party's secretary-general, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez.
In a statement, Arroyo said, “My joining the PDP-Laban is to consolidate support for the President. It is a matter of course as we have been talking about this for quite sometime.”
Aside from Arroyo, Bohol Representative Arturo Yap, Cagayan Economic Zone Authority administrator Raul Lambino, Camiguin Rep. Xavier Jesus Romualdo, and Agrarian Reform Sec. Nasser Pangandaman also took their oath as members of the political party of President Rodrigo Duterte.
PDP-Laban President, Senate President Koko Pimentel, said the party is set to vet and choose their official candidates for the May 2019 national and local elections soon.
He said, due to the "massive influx" of new members, PDP-Laban will stop accepting new members by the end of November so they will have enough time to study their options.
"By stopping recruitment, we will have time to indoctrinate and train our members, screen possible candidates, and absorb our new members into our grassroots infrastructure," he said.
Alvarez is allegedly being considered as the administration party's campaign manager in the upcoming 2019 elections.
Alvarez said he will accept the role.
Pimentel earlier floated some names for the possible senatorial slate, which include him and lawmakers Rodolfo Fariñas, Geraldine Roman, Karlo Nograles, and Albee Benitez.
Alvarez, however, said the list is not yet final after Fariñas declined to be included in the list.
Alvarez said they are considering winnability in their choices.