Speaker denies senator's claim: ‘Nagma-marites siguro’

Speaker denies senator’s claim: ‘Nagma-marites siguro’

/ 04:46 PM January 26, 2024

Senator Imee Marcos and Speaker Martin Romualdez

Senator Imee Marcos and Speaker Martin Romualdez

UPDATED MANILA, Philippines — Speaker Martin Romualdez on Friday denied being behind the alleged P20-million allocation per congressional district pushing for the so-called “people’s initiative” to amend the 1987 Constitution.

Romualdez’s pronouncement was in response to Senator Imee Marcos’ claim that the P20-million offer came from his office.


“That is baseless; siguro kausapin mo na lang siya, nagma-marites siguro, nakikinig sa mga Marites,” said Romualdez.


(It’s probably unfounded; maybe you should just talk to her; she might be engaging in gossip or listening to gossip.)

READ: Senate, House clash over people’s initiative for Charter change

Romualdez even dared Marcos to prove it to “whatever court.”

“I’d like her to prove it and you know, she has the proper means and ways and she can go to whatever court,” he said.

Romualdez also said his lines remain open for Marcos for any clarifications.

“I haven’t had the opportunity to speak to her recently so I’m not aware where this is all coming from … I respect her as my cousin, as my senator and we leave it at that. Free anytime, she can give me a call, she can text me anytime, clarify anything. But if she prefers to do it out in the media, that’s her prerogative but there’s no truth to that,” he added.

In a separate press conference, Romualdez’s cousin, Senator Imee Marcos claimed it was “definitely” Speaker Martin Romualdez behind the alleged P20-million allocation.


“Definitely opisina niya ang nag-alok ng P20-million kada distrito, definitely nanggaling sa kanila ‘yung timeline na July 9 tapos na ang lahat at ibibigay na ng buong buo itong economic provisions etc., definitely derived from his office with very clear numbers identifying the staff number and attorneys involved,” Marcos said in a virtual press conference when asked if her cousin Romualdez was behind the alleged bribery for people’s initiative.

(Definitely, his office extended the offer of P20 million per district. The timeline of July 9 when everything should be completed and the economic provisions are ready to be provided in full — this definitely originated from them, including very specific details such as staff numbers and the involved attorneys, all undoubtedly traced back to his office.)

READ: Villanueva says he has proof House behind ‘fake people’s initiative’

All of this developed after proponents for a people’s initiative started collecting signatures to petition to amend the 1987 Constitution and allow Congress to jointly vote therein; however, concerns arose regarding the legitimacy of the initiative after signatories were reported to have been bribed to support the movement.

The issue resulted in growing tensions between the two chambers of Congress.

Due to this, the Senate Committee on Electoral Reforms chaired by Imee Marcos is set to launch an investigation into the alleged offering of social aid to the public in exchange for their signatures for the people’s initiative.

Among other resource persons, Marcos said that House members are also welcome to attend the hearing.

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“They are always invited and recognized and allowed to speak but we will not invite them forcibly,” said Marcos.

TAGS: Imee Marcos, Romualdez

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