Latest Stories

House recognizes Reyes as Marinduque rep; rival Velasco opts to skip Sona


Marinduque Rep. Regina Reyes INQUIRER.net file photo

MANILA, Philippines—In the fight for the seat of Marinduque in Congress, Regina Ongsiako-Reyes outpunched her rival Lord Allan Velasco on Monday after the House decided to recognize her as the representative of the province.

But Velasco’s camp vowed to “take all possible remedies” to reverse the House’s recognition of Reyes and put Velasco in Marinduque’s congressional seat.

Velasco’s lawyer, Danny Gapasin, said the candidate decided not to attend the opening of the House after being advised of the pending case involving Marinduque’s representation in Congress.

Velasco issued a statement later saying he chose not to attend the House opening to “avoid any untoward incident” during the proceedings.

“My absence in the opening session does not mean that I am giving up on my battle for the truth and what’s right, but instead my absence shows my respect for the House and my colleagues and for the sanctity of the proceedings in the election for its Speaker and other officers,” Velasco said.

He also sent a letter to Speaker Feliciano Belmonte requesting that the roll be corrected by deleting Reyes’ name and replacing it with his name and that he be recognized as the duly elected representative of Marinduque.


But it was Reyes’ name that was called. She was among the 267 lawmakers who took their oaths of office during the session. And she participated in the election for the Speaker, voting for Belmonte.

Reyes hobnobbed with other House members during a breakfast gathering at the House. She was also the one invited to the joint session with the Senate for President Aquino’s State of the Nation Address.

It was also Reyes’ picture, and not that of Velasco’s, that was hung in the gallery of lawmakers outside the session hall.

With all that, the House appeared to have ignored the proclamation by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) of Velasco last week as the representative of Marinduque, nullifying Reyes’ earlier proclamation as the winner of the congressional election in the province on May 13.

Reyes went to the Supreme Court questioning the Comelec’s decision to disqualify her on grounds that she is a US citizen. The court upheld the Comelec’s decision, but Reyes filed a motion for reconsideration.


In a statement posted on his Facebook account, Gapasin said the House ignored the rule of law by recognizing Reyes instead of Velasco.

If the House leadership is not convinced about the Supreme Court ruling, Gapasin said, “they should seek legal remedies, but defiance is not among them.”

Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes was not available for comment on Monday, but in an earlier interview he said that it was “beyond the powers” of the election commission to enforce Velasco’s proclamation.

“We have nothing to do with the House of Representatives. We cannot force them to accept or not to accept [the decision]. We proclaimed Velasco based on our decision and whether he will be accepted or not is beyond our powers,” Brillantes said.

He said the matter was for the House to settle.

“It’s up to them,” he said.—With reports from Jocelyn R. Uy in Manila and Maricar Cinco, Inquirer Southern Luzon

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Congress , Lord Alla Velasco , Marinduque , Politics , Regina Ongsiako Reyes

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  2. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  3. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  4. Massive infra spending set
  5. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  6. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  7. Passengers denied chance to escape sinking South Korea ferry
  8. South Korea president shouted down by distraught parents
  9. Two Popes who would be saints
  10. Lacson’s wife loses diamond earring to thieves but recovers jewelry quickly with police arrest
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. MH370 co-pilot made mid-flight phone call – report
  7. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  8. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  9. Massive infra spending set
  10. OFW brings MERS virus to Philippines
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  5. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  6. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  7. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  8. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  9. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia


  • US teacher fired over comment on black president
  • Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  • Title of new Hillary Clinton book: ‘Hard Choices’
  • Filipinos, Dutch re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  • 14 killed in car bombing in Homs
  • Sports

  • Nadal ousted by Ferrer in Monte Carlo quarters
  • Pacquiao shorts in Bradley fight sold for P1.7M in LA auction
  • Ryu pitches Dodgers past Giants
  • Alonso sets the pace in Chinese GP practice
  • Heat seek Three-peat but Spurs, Pacers top seeds
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Barbie doll has a problem
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • Las Vegas ‘Pinoy Pride’ fest hails Filipino heritage
  • Marking Jesus’ journey on Good Friday
  • Filipina accomplice arrested for fake bills in Malaysia
  • DoH denies Filipino nurse no longer positive for MERS virus
  • WHO warns vs spread of MERS-Cov, urges vigilance in taking precautions
  • Marketplace