Barzaga lauds Romualdez for taking ‘moral high road’ amid attacks
MANILA, Philippines–Cavite Representative Elpidio Barzaga Jr. praised Speaker Martin Romualdez for staying focused on his duty as House of Representatives leader, despite being on the receiving end of Vice President Sara Duterte’s attacks, saying Romualdez has taken the “moral high road.”
Barzaga said that Romualdez refrained from making any negative comments about Duterte, despite being the target of her sharp insinuations in the wake of an alleged coup attempt against him.
“He never fired back with insults of his own. That shows strength of character,” said Barzaga, chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources.
Barzaga acknowledged that Romualdez’s leadership, supported by various political parties, has resulted in the House’s approval of priority bills proposed by President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and the Legislative-Executive Development Advisory Council (LEDAC). These include the proposed Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF).
Political infighting, Barzaga suggested, is not in the nation’s best interests, particularly as Marcos campaigned on a platform of unity with Duterte. Duterte has since resigned from the ruling Lakas-CMD party, presided over by Romualdez.
Barzaga, a senior legislator and former president of the National Unity Party (NUP), highlighted Romualdez’s efforts to bolster Duterte’s vice presidential bid. He noted that Romualdez, who had been instrumental in persuading Duterte to run for the position under the UniTeam ticket, fostered a close relationship with the Vice President.
“The Speaker worked hard for then Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte’s vice presidential bid because he genuinely believed that she would make a difference,” said Barzaga.
The Cavite representative expressed hopes for reconciliation, saying, “Their rift is sad news and I hope that it will be mended soon.”
Duterte omitted mention of Marcos’ middle name, Romualdez, during a speech at the Office of the Vice President’s thanksgiving event, Pasidungog (Tribute), held last Monday in Manila. This omission carries significant implications, as the President’s mother, former first lady Imelda Romualdez-Marcos, is the aunt of Speaker Romualdez.
Last month, at the height of rumors regarding a coup against Romualdez, Duterte shared an elusive social media post. “In your ambition, do not be tambaloslos,” she wrote, leaving the recipient of her message unnamed.
The term tambaloslos, originating from Visayan, Bicolano, and Mindanao folklore, refers to a mythical creature notorious for its large mouth and penis, often symbolizing reckless or careless behavior.