President Rodrigo Duterte will meet with rival “House Speakers” Representatives Alan Peter Cayetano and Lord Allan Velasco on Tuesday in Malacañang. The meeting is ahead of the Congress’s special session for the deliberations on the proposed 2021 national budget.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said the Duterte’s meeting with Cayetano and Velasco is to happen at 12:30 pm at the Malacañang Golf Clubhouse. Roque said the three would discuss the passage of the proposed P4.506-trillion national budget for 2021.
An ally of Cayetano, Laguna Representative Dan Fernandez, also confirmed the meeting.
Yesterday, the two representatives confused the public on who the real House Speaker is.
The majority of lawmakers, which were believed to support Velasco, held a session on Monday at the Celebrity Sports Complex in Quezon City.
With 186 affirmative votes, the Speaker’s post became vacant. 1-PACMAN Partylist Rep. Mikee Romero then formally nominated Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco as Speaker of the House. They then voted Velasco as the “new” House Speaker.
During the said session in Celebrity Sports Club, the lawmakers also elected a “new” Secretary-General and Sergeant of Arms of the House of Representatives.
Duterte to meet with Velasco, Cayetano in Malacañang today
Atty. Jocelia Bighani-Sipin was elected as Secretary-General of the chamber while retired Police Major General Mao Aplasca was installed Sergeant of Arms.
Meanwhile, House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano said the Celebrity Sports Club session that elected Velasco as speaker was “fake.”
“Ang Celebrity Sports Club ay hindi naman Kongreso [Celebrity Sports Club is not Congress], it creates a disturbing precedent. Ngayon may fake session na ginagawa,” he said in a press conference.
“This is a very disturbing precedent. Sabi nila, basta may quorum. Basta may quorum, they can meet any day and anywhere and do whatever they want? Kung valid ‘yan, banana republic na tayo,” he added.
However, for Velasco, the Speakership row between him and Cayetano already ended as he was elected by the “majority” of House members.
“Tapos na po ang issue ng speakership today because we have majority of the House members with us,” he said.