Taguig-Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano was ousted as House Speaker even before he could resign, according to 1-PACMAN Partylist Rep. Michael Romero.
Romero said Cayetano was ousted on October 12 when 186 lawmakers declared the Speakership vacant and elected Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco as leader of the lower chamber. The House session was held at the Celebrity Sports Plaza in Quezon City and not at the Batasan Pambansa also located in QC.
“October 12 at 12 noon, 186 congressmen ousted Alan Peter Cayetano as Speaker of the House of Representatives. Same day, October 12, we elected—all 186 of us comprising the majority—all voted and elected Speaker Lord Allan Velasco as the new Speaker of the House of Representatives,” Romero said in an interview with ABS-CBN News Channel on Wednesday.
“The next day, October 13, Alan Peter Cayetano resigned, so I don’t think he resigned for what purpose because he was already ousted a day before. I’m just being factual,” he added.
Apparently, Romero was the first casualty of the battle for the speakership after he was stripped of his deputy speaker post when Cayetano still led the House.
Under the term-sharing deal brokered by President Rodrigo Duterte, Cayetano would serve as House Speaker for the first 15 months, or until October 2020, while Velasco would take over and assume the position for the remaining 21 months or until the 18th Congress ends in 2022.
However, Cayetano’s move to abruptly suspend the session has prevented the speakership takeover of Velasco on October 14.
Duterte then called for a special session from October 13 to 16 to prevent a delay in the passage of the proposed 2021 national budget.
Cayetano, in announcing his resignation, also apologized to Duterte.
“Ang pagkakaalam ko talaga, I was to handle the budget and I was told until matapos ‘yung budget para waling disruption and I invited Congressman Velasco to join me (Based on my understanding, I was to handle the budget and I was told until budget deliberations are finished there would be no changes in the House leadership and I invited Congressman Velasco to join me),” Cayetano said.
“Mr. President, if I made a mistake, mali ang reading ko, misunderstood ko na gusto mong ituloy at tapusin ko ang budget, ako’y humihingi ng paumanhin. Hindi ko intention—never—na hindi ka sundin (Mr. President, if I made a mistake, my reading was wrong, I misunderstood that you want to proceed with the budget, so I apologize. It was not my intention not to follow you),” he added.
Duterte last Friday said that while he wanted to keep his hands off the tussle between Cayetano and Velasco, he said that Congress must prioritize the approval of the proposed 2021 P4.56-trillion budget, which he sees as vital in reviving the Philippine economy that has been badly affected by the coronavirus pandemic. (sovereignph.com)