Lakas-CMD, 7 political parties forge alliance
MANILA, Philippines — In a not-so-subtle move to ensure the backing of lawmakers for the House leadership as well as the government, the ruling Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD) party has forged alliance pacts with seven political parties, which vowed their full support until 2025 to Speaker Martin Romualdez and President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s legislative agenda.
Monday’s “reaffirmation” of Lakas-CMD’s strong alliance with the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban), National Unity Party (NUP), Nacionalista Party (NP), Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC), Party-list Coalition Foundation Inc. (PCFI), Partido Navoteño and Centrist Democratic Party of the Philippines (CDP) took place ahead of Congress’ sine die adjournment this week.
It was also preceded by rumors of a House coup d’etat that was allegedly nipped in the bud and resulted in the “demotion” of Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo from senior deputy speaker to deputy speaker. Arroyo, a former President, is the chair emeritus of Lakas-CMD while Romualdez, a cousin of President Marcos, is its current chair.
Arroyo, however, denied her involvement in any “political fantasy” of a House coup and maintained that “every politician worth his or her salt would know that in the Philippines, no House coup can ever succeed without the consent of the President.”
‘Show of force’
A source who requested anonymity for lack of authority to speak on the matter claimed that Monday’s reaffirmation of alliances was a “show of force” intended to drive home the message that no coup would succeed in the lower chamber.
“Since Lakas is allied with the other parties, attempts to talk to any of them will be futile and will be exposed,” he said.
He added that the timing was also significant, as it would thwart any move to replace the House leadership while Congress was on break.
Romualdez, Senior Deputy Speaker Aurelio Gonzales, and House Secretary General Reginald Velasco witnessed the signing of the alliance pacts with the signatories led by Lakas-CMD executive vice president and House Majority Leader Manuel Jose Dalipe; PDP-Laban president and Palawan Rep. Jose Alvarez; NUP vice chair for internal affairs and Deputy Speaker Roberto Puno; Romblon Rep. Eleandro Jesus Madrona of NP; NPC president and Rizal Rep. Michael John Duavit; PCFI president and Ako Bicol party list Rep. Elizaldy Co; Partido Navoteño chair and Navotas Rep. Tobias Tiangco; and CDP president and Cagayan de Oro Rep. Rufus Rodriguez.
Under the alliance agreements, which would “remain in full force and effect until the 19th Congress adjourns in 2025,” the signatories vowed to give their “full and unqualified support” to Romualdez, Mr. Marcos and his legislative agenda.
They also cited their shared vision of a strong republic through the sustainable growth and development of regions and reiterated their alliance in the House of Representatives.