President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday stressed that there will be a huge problem should House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano goes back from his word and not honor the term-sharing agreement with Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Velasco.
In a television interview, Duterte stressed that the House Speaker’s breaking off from his word of honor will impose a huge predicament, noting that it’s certainly going to be a “problem” when the time comes.
“I was there when we agreed, three of us, and I announced it after. He does not want to honor it. That’s his problem,” said Duterte. “It is going to be a problem so we will solve the problem when we are there. It’s not here yet, so it remains to be hypothetical,” he added.
It can be recalled that Cayetano, Velasco, and Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez had been locked in a rivalry for the speakership after the three lawmakers — known allies of Duterte — have expressed their desire to get the Speakership.
However, the President had opted a term-sharing between Cayetano and Velasco to end the squabbling among his allies at the House, saying that the former Senator will serve as Speaker in the first 15 months of the 18th Congress while Velasco will succeed to serve for the remaining 21 months.
Members of the House of Representatives previously said that the House Speaker’s high trust and approval rating from a September Pulse Asia survey may prompt House members to support his stay.
Cayetano – in a recent statement – stressed the possibility of serving as Speaker for full three years if Velasco gives way to him, but noted that the President still has the final say.