Duterte says House speakership to be shared by Cayetano, Velasco
President Rodrigo Duterte decided on Monday to back up the term-sharing agreement in the House Speakership of Taguig City Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano and Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco.
In a speech in Malacañang, Duterte said Cayetano, who is his former Foreign Affairs secretary, would be the Speaker of the House of Representatives for the first 15 months, while Velasco would be on the remaining 21 months.
"I’m sorry, I’m quite late. I was talking to three people. I think it’s about time I talk. So your Speaker will be Alan Peter Cayetano. The sharing here is he shares the term with Lord Velasco," he said.
He said Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez would be the Majority Floor Leader.
"I tried to distance myself from the… But apparently I said it’s time that I talk. So that’s the set-up," Duterte said.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo, in a statement, noted that the election of the Speaker has resulted "in a bitter and fractious rivalry that threatens the break-up of political allies."
He said Duterte, "to save the unity of the alliance and avert its fragmentation, obliged to the request of the three candidates, who to their credit agree to respect the choice of PRRD (Duterte)."
The 18th Congress will open on July 22. Celerina Monte/DMS