Cayetano denies some Cabinet members ‘dictating’ House on leadership issue
MANILA, Philippines — Taguig-Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano on Thursday night denied that some Cabinet members were “dictating” the House on its leadership issue.
“Hindi po totoo na nagdidikta ang Kabinete (It’s not true that the Cabinet is meddling). We just want a better relationship with the Judiciary, a better relationship with the Senate, and better relationship with the Cabinet para mas mabilis,” Cayetano, President Rodrigo Duterte’s endorsed House Speaker, told some PDP-Laban House members in a meeting streamed on Facebook.
“We want to pass much more (bills) than what was passed before including constitutional change,” he added.
Anakalusugan Rep. Mike Defensor earlier revealed a text message, supposedly coming from Davao Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, urging House members to reject Duterte’s endorsement of Cayetano allegedly because the Chief Executive had been “set-up” by “greedy” Cabinet members allied with Cayetano.
The Davao Mayor denied this and branded it as a “disinformation” drive. Defensor then
apologized to Sara.
The alleged message stated: “Hi sir! I have the go signal of Mayor Inday to publish. ‘Kaya nanawagan siya ngayon sa lahat ng mga Congressmen na bumoto ayon sa kanilang kagustuhan dahil ang kanya ama ay na set-up lamang ng mga gahaman na gabinete na kaalyado ni Cayetano (I appeal to all Congressmen to vote in accordance with their conscience. My father has been set up into this.’ — Mayor Inday.)”
The term-sharing between Cayetano and Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco, which Duterte backed, is also being pushed by some Cabinet members who are supportive of Cayetano’s speakership bid, according to Buhay Rep. Lito Atienza.
In the same meeting, Cayetano said he talked to the Department of Budget and Management to ensure the “smooth” passage of the 2020 national budget and that no districts would be left out in terms of budgetary allocation. The former Foreign Affairs Chief also stressed this would not be the unconstitutional “pork barrel.”
“(We talked to DBM) para siguraduhing smooth ang budget at para siguraduhin na ang bawat distrito walang maiiwanan. Emphasis ha, hindi pork ‘yun kundi rural development,” he said.
(We talked to DBM to ensure that the budget is smooth and each district will not be left behind. It’s not pork but rural development.)
“Ang pork ‘yung pinamimigay para sa pulitka. Ang pinag-uuspan natin mga ospital, school kalye…(Pork is given away freely in politics, but what we are talking about hospitals, school, etc.)” he added.
The former senator also said he promised to talk to Velasco and Martin, who already accepted the Majority Leader post, to thresh out other organizational matters in the House, including committee chairmanships and assignments.
“I promised Congressman Velasco na mag-uusap kami and then kaming tatlo para nga ma-join na natin ‘yung ating forces (I promised Congressman Velasco that we will talk and the three of us will join forces),” he said, adding that they would be holding a majority bloc caucus next week.
Cayetano would serve as the 18th Congress’ Speaker for the first 15 months, while Velasco would take over the remaining 21 months of the three-year term.
But Davao City 1st District Rep. Paolo Duterte on Thursday said the battle for House Speaker is far from over, as an aspirant for the top House post may stage a coup d’ état during the election of Speaker on July 22. /ee
Paolo Duterte says speaker race far from over, hints at looming cou
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