The rift between House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and Davao del Norte Representative Antonio Floirendo Jr. stems from "greed for wealth, power and influence," Floirendo's partner said on Thursday.
Though reports of an "altercation" between the two lawmakers' girlfriends during the MassKara Festival in Bacolod last year are true, Alvarez's reason to have Floirendo probed for graft is "deeper than what is being printed in the papers," Cathy Binag, Floirendo's partner, said.
"I find it petty for some matured men to be burning bridges of friendship over a girls' spat.... It all boils down to greed. Greed for wealth, power and influence," she said in a statement.
Floirendo is separated from his wife, Miss Universe 1973 Margie Moran.
Ties between Alvarez and Floirendo, both members of Duterte's PDP-Laban, reportedly soured due to a quarrel between their girlfriends.
Alvarez told the Philippine Star that Floirendo was also "mad at them because his wife Emily and their children would always run to them (Binag and Floirendo) for help whenever they were in trouble with the Speaker."
Alvarez's daughter, Paola, meanwhile, issued a statement labeling Binag's allegations as "crass and juvenile."
"It is incredible how personal relationships are exploited by Rep. Tonyboy Floirendo's live-in partner, Ms. Cathy Binag, to twist an otherwise simple question of facts," Alvarez's daughter said.
"We prefer to keep our personal lives private... We hope Ms. Binag will respect that and stop dragging us into her personal issues," she added.
Binag, in her statement, apologized to Alvarez's family saying it was not her "intention" to "hurt" them.
Aside from girlfriend drama, a supposed ouster plot masterminded by Floirendo against the Speaker was also reported to be the reason behind the rift between the two PDP-Laban lawmakers.
Floirendo has denied involvement in an ouster move against Alvarez.
Alvarez has also belied reports that his graft complaint against Floirendo stemmed for their girlfriends' cat fight.
Alvarez had filed a complaint at the Ombudsman against Floirendo for anomalies concerning the Floirendo-owned Tadeco's joint venture agreement with the Bureau of Corrections turning over 5,000 hectares of the Davao Penal Colony into a banana plantation, at rates which Alvarez claimed were disadvantageous to the government.
Floirendo had countered that their feud stems from rumors he was behind plots to oust Alvarez as speaker. --With reports from RG Cruz