The next Speaker of the House should emulate the example set by former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who worked round the clock to ensure the passage of the President’s priority bills, a senior House official said Monday.
“I hope the next speaker we pick as the leader of our Congress will be as industrious as Speaker Arroyo,” said Senior Deputy Majority Leader Rodante Marcoleta, a party-list legislator. “It may be difficult to duplicate Speaker Arroyo’s feat in the legislative mill, but we need a similar leader… to ensure the enactment into laws the President’s reform agenda.”
“It may be too early to discuss the race for the next Speaker but we, the incumbents, have the duty to remind incoming congressmen, particularly the freshmen, of the need to select a House leader worthy of the job,” he added.
Going by Marcoleta’s statement, another lawmaker said the deputy majority leader’s description of the next Speaker fits Representative-elect Martin Romualdez of Leyte.
The legislator, who requested anonymity because he did not want to displease at least four other congressmen who are eyeing the speakership, said Romualdez is a hard worker who can push the President’s legislative agenda forward.
Marcoleta said he and his fellow legislators in the Party-list Coalition Foundation Inc. were having a discussion on the issue and all agreed to back a House leader who is known for supporting advocacies for social reforms.
“We, in the PCFI, have various advocacies. We need the next speaker who will help us push for the passage of laws related to these advocacies,” he said.
“The 17th Congress has been supportive of the President’s reform agenda and we expect the speaker of the 18th Congress to work with us, possibly round the clock, to make the President’s vision for the country a reality,” he added.
Marcoleta said party-list legislators also expect the next House leader to emulate Speaker Arroyo’s sense of fairness and equity in dealing with their fellow congressmen.
“Under her watch, party-list congressmen were given the opportunity to lead and help steer the enactment of our pet bills into laws,” Marcoleta said.
In just seven months since Arroyo assumed the speakership, the House has approved all legislative measures on President Rodrigo Duterte’s legislative agenda.
The House under Arroyo, in total, processed 1,361 bills, approved 492 measures of which 95 have been passed into law. In December alone, 39 bills were ready for the President’s signature; 27 with ratified bicameral reports; 25 in the bicameral conference committee; 22 approved on second reading and 38 resolutions approved.
“We have processed an average of 33 measures a day. We hope the work ethic of Speaker Arroyo will rub [off] on her successor so we can all help realize the President’s vision for the country,” Marcoleta said.
READ: More solons vouch for ‘next Speaker’READ: Party-lists choose ‘next Speaker’READ: Romualdez is next Speaker–Sara
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