Duterte to meet Cayetano, Velasco Tuesday amid speakership issues
MANILA, Philippines — Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano and Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco are scheduled to have a meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday as the speakership issue continues to heat up in the House of Representatives.
This was confirmed by PDP-Laban Executive Director Ron Munsayac on Monday. PDP-Laban is the political party of Velasco.
“There will be a meeting tomorrow between Reps. Velasco and Cayetano,” Munsayac told INQUIRER.net in a text message.
Munsayac said Velasco will be accompanied by party leaders and coalition allies from the House.
The meeting will happen amid the brewing tension in the lower chamber as a number of lawmakers—both from the majority and minority bloc—express support for Cayetano’s continued leadership despite the term-sharing agreement between him and Velasco.
Under the agreement, Cayetano would serve as House Speaker in the first 15 months of the 18th Congress while Velasco will succeed to serve for the remaining 21 months under a term-sharing agreement. If this is to be followed, Cayetano’s term would end in October this year.
Asked if they are expecting to settle the speakership issue during the meeting, Munsayac said: “Sana po (Hopefully). We are hopeful that Speaker Cayetano adheres to the gentleman’s agreement.”
“It’s important we keep the word of honor and trust in our leaders, especially politicians,” he added.
In a Facebook post on Monday, Velasco once again called on his colleagues to uphold the term-sharing agreement between him and Cayetano, saying it was made “for God and our country.”
Velasco pointed out that the agreement between him and Cayetano was based on mutual trust and confidence, especially as it was brokered by and forged in the presence of President Rodrigo Duterte.
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