‘I don’t crave for anything more’: Cayetano thanks colleagues for ‘overwhelming’ support
MANILA, Philippines — A day after his offer to resign from his post was rejected by majority of his colleagues, Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano gave thanks to his fellow congressmen for their “overwhelming show of multi-partisan support.”
In a Facebook post on Thursday, Cayetano said he went to Congress on Wednesday “with a heavy heart,” knowing that he would offer his resignation and possibly end his stint as Speaker of the House.
“What transpired, the overwhelming show of multi-partisan support from my fellow members of the House — was, in all honesty, something that I had prayed for. I thank all of you who stood up for me and the institution, with all my heart,” Cayetano said.
“As far as this Speakership issue is concerned, whatever else happens from this moment on, I am satisfied. I do not crave for anything more, because nothing can surpass the warmth of your approval,” he added.
Cayetano likewise welcomed the pronouncements of President Rodrigo Duterte respecting the independence of Congress.
“Salamat sa lahat ng patuloy na sumusuporta. It truly pains me to see relationships I had helped nurture for the past months strained and broken because of politics,” Cayetano said.
“In this, I welcome the many statements of the President upholding the independence of Congress, and respecting the votes of confidence given by its members to the present leadership and finally putting this controversy to rest,” he added.
The House Speaker also said that partisan interests should not take over public welfare, as he vowed to pass the proposed national budget for 2021—a budget which, he said, “will be pork-free, without parked funds, and with no corruption.”
“It is true that a burden has been lifted – but now more challenges lie ahead. We cannot turn our backs on the crisis facing our nation, we have to remain strong, stay the course, and provide the leadership our people need,” Cayetano said.
“We have made a vow to the President and the country that we will craft a budget that Congress can be proud of – one that will put us on solid footing to full recovery,” he added.
“For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will…
In ending his post, Cayetano urged his colleagues to “resolve to move past this as quickly as possible, fix what has been broken, and show the country that we are worthy of their continued high regard.”
During Wednesday’s session, Cayetano delivered a speech and ended it by offering his resignation following the term-sharing agreement he forged with Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco.
However, this was immediately rejected by his colleagues — with 184 lawmakers voting to deny his resignation offer.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said Cayetano met with Duterte after his resignation offer was rejected but said that the meeting was scheduled two weeks ago by Rep. Eddie Villanueva to “pray over” the chief executive.
“Nagkataon lamang po na ang pangyayari sa Kamara kahapon ay nangyari doon sa scheduled meeting sa panig ni Deputy Speaker Brother Eddie Villanueva at ni Presidente. Pero ang main dahilan po doon ay para i-pray over ang ating Presidente na nangyari naman po,” Roque said in an online briefing.
(It was a coincidence that what happened in Congress yesterday coincided with the scheduled meeting of Deputy Speaker Brother Eddie Villanueva and the President. But the main reason is to pray over the President which happened.)
Roque added that the speakership ”controversy is over” and that House members should now focus on passing the proposed 2021 budget on time.
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