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Duterte to join administration campaign rallies as midterm elections nears – Malacañang

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Monday, May 6th, 2019

After keeping out of the public eye in the past few days, President Rodrigo Duterte is back to his busy schedule.

Now that the May 13 Midterm Elections is drawing near, the Malacañang said that the President is set to attend to as many sorties this week to give support and campaign for the administration candidates.

“Ang alam ko sa Thursday meron sa Davao malaking rally. Parang iyon yata iyong last pitch niya for the election season eh [What I know is that on Thursday, there will be a big rally in Davao. It seems like it will be his last pitch for the election season],” said Presidential Spokesperson and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo.

Aside from the PDP-Laban campaign rally, the Chief Executive was also invited to the senatorial campaign caravan of Hugpong ng Pagbabago.

Malacañang said it is important for the administration candidates and Presidential allies to win the elections to ensure that the government programs will continue.

“Every election, to a president, means something to him because those who will be elected in the Congress will have to be partners in the administration of the government kaya mas magandang yung mga naroroon yung tutulong sa kaniya [that is why it is better to have somebody who will help him],” Panelo said. –(with reports from Rosalie Coz)

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Speakership bets Cayetano, Romualdez, Velasco meet with PDP-Laban

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, July 12th, 2019

(L-R) Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Velasco , Taguig-Pateros Representative Alan Peter Cayetano, and Leyte Representative Martin Romualdez | Courtesy: Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano

MANILA, Philippines – Three lawmakers gunning for the speakership of the House of Representatives of the 18th Congress met on Thursday night with some members of the ruling party, PDP-Laban.

Taguig-Pateros Representative Alan Peter Cayetano, Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Velasco and Leyte Representative Martin Romualdez met with PDP-Laban in Taguig to discuss the forthcoming opening of the 18th Congress and the measures that need to be prioritized.

Cayetano also talked about his programs that will help the Duterte administration’s legislative agenda, as well as his plan to push for full debates on significant issues that will affect the welfare of the Filipino people.

They also discussed the term-sharing set-up between Cayetano and Velasco as House speakers endorsed by the party’s chairman, President Rodrigo Duterte.

READ: Duterte: Cayetano, Velasco to share term as House Speaker

PDP-Laban president, Senator Aquilino ‘Koko’ Pimentel earlier said Cayetano still needs to work on getting the speakership post despite Duterte’s endorsement.

READ: Cayetano has to work for House speakership – Koko Pimentel

He added that Cayetano still has to convince House members to vote for him, including the 85 solons belonging to the ruling party.

Prior to the president’s endorsement of the speakership term-sharing scheme, the PDP-Laban fielded Velasco as its bet for the post.  

Cayetano is a member of the Nacionalista party while Velasco is a PDP-Laban member while Romualdez is with Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats.

Romualdez earlier said he dropped from the speakership race and accepted the House Majority Leader job as suggested by the president. (with details from Grace Casin)

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Sara Duterte nixes ‘counter-productive’ term sharing for House Speaker

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, July 5th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Regional party Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) head and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio on Friday rejected the proposed term-sharing set-up for the speaker of the House of Representatives of the 18th Congress.

Duterte-Carpio said term-sharing will only be “counter-productive” and may “slow down” the last three years of the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.

She also believes that this set-up would only create an environment of “deceit, dissent and distrust” in the House of Representatives, with other aspirants working to unseat the incumbent leader.

“In a term sharing situation, the House of Representatives will be racked with unseating the incumbent Speaker, deceit, dissent and distrust,” the presidential daughter said in a statement.

“We do not know why the term sharing influencers do not seem to care what will happen to the House. They just want to install a Speaker and do not think about what comes after,” she added.

The Davao mayor emphasized that members of the House, as well as political parties, should have the final say on the speakership issue.

“Let us leave the Speaker issue to the members of the House of Representatives and the political parties and that includes HNP and HTL (Hugpong sa Tawong Lungsod),” she said.

The HNP earlier nominated Davao City 3rd District Representative Isidro Ungab as its candidate for the speakership race while the president’s party, the PDP-Laban, vowed to support the bid of Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Velasco.

READ: Hugpong ng Pagbabago endorses Ungab for House Speaker post

READ: Koko Pimentel says PDP-Laban to still support Velasco’s speakership bid

Talks on term-sharing for the Speaker floated after speakership contender, Taguig-Pateros Representative Alan Peter Cayetano claimed he had agreed to serve as speaker for 15 months and be succeeded by Velasco for 21 months.

Velasco denied agreeing to such a deal with Cayetano.

READ: Velasco denies agreeing to House speakership term-sharing deal with Cayetano

The matter on speakership even got more complicated after Davao City 1st District Representative Paolo Duterte announced his possible bid for the post.

He said he decided to gun for the highest House post to unite its members being divided by the race. He also proposed that the position be shared by representatives from Mindanao, Visayas, Luzon, and the party-list groups.

In line with his bid to unify the House of Representatives, Duterte and eight other solons said they formed a coalition which will be composed of congressmen who are committed to institute governance and development reforms that are necessary for the Philippines to secure its rightful place in the world stage of nations, particularly in the Southeast Asian region.

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Davao Rep. Ungab accepts Hugpong’s House speaker nomination

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Thursday, July 4th, 2019

Davao City 3rd District Rep. Isidro Ungab

MANILA, Philippines – Davao City Third District Representative Isidro Ungab has accepted the endorsement of regional party, Hugpong ng Pagbabago, as a candidate for House Speaker.

In a statement, Ungab said he will abide by the decision of the party.

“I am deeply honored for the endorsement as House Speaker. I am a good soldier under the command of every Filipino,” he said.

“I am ready, willing and capable to serve in any capacity. I reiterate my commitment to support the legislative agenda of President Rodrigo Duterte, ensure further economic growth, lower poverty incidence and to help create more opportunities for all Filipinos,” he added.

On Wednesday (July 3), the HNP which is led by Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, nominated Ungab as its bet for the speakership amid a tight race in the House of Representatives of the 18th Congress.

READ: Hugpong ng Pagbabago endorses Ungab for House Speaker post

The HNP said they nominated Ungab for the top House post in case President Rodirgo Duterte rejects the intent of his son, Davao City 1st District Representative Paolo Duterte, to join the speakership race “because of delicadeza.”  

“Therefore, we are endorsing the bid of Congressman Isidro Ungab for Speaker,” the party said.

It can be recalled that on Tuesday (July 2), Paolo Duterte announced his possible bid for speakership amid talks on term-sharing. He also proposed that the speaker of the house post be shared by representatives from Mindanao, Visayas, Luzon, and the party-list groups.

President Duterte earlier said he will step down from office should his son decide to gun for House speakership.

The HNP said Ungab is an experienced legislator and the only congressman to hold the chairmanships of both Ways and Means and Appropriations Committees.

Ungab assured he is ready and open to work with everyone, even expressing hope that every member will work towards unity to establish a strong House.

“HNP hopes that everyone will aim for and work towards unity and cooperation in order to establish a strong and efficient House,” he said.

Other contenders for the speakership post are Taguig-Pateros Representative Alan Peter Cayetano, Leyte Representative Martin Romualdez, Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Velasco and Pampanga Representative Aurelio Gonzales.

House members are expected elect the next Speaker when the session of the 18th Congress opens in the morning of July 22, the same day when President Duterte delivers his fourth State of the Nation Address (SONA).

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