Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio has revealed that Taguig Rep.-elect Alan Peter Cayetano issued a “veiled threat” that he would “break up the group” if she endorses Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco as the next House Speaker.
In a statement Tuesday night, the presidential daughter likewise rebuffed the reconciliation offer of reelected Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez, saying it was “deceiving and utterly lacked sincerity.”
“Unknown to him, he was surreptitiously videotaped when he threatened, after his win in the recent elections in Davao del Norte, ‘Ipapahiya ko si Sara [I will put Sara to shame],’” said Duterte-Carpio, who has been largely credited for Alvarez’s ouster as House Speaker in July last year.
While Cayetano did not ask for her endorsement, Duterte-Carpio said her father’s runningmate in the 2016 elections did not mince words in cautioning her against endorsing Velasco.
“He came with a veiled threat, that if I endorse Rep. Velasco for Speaker, ‘I would break up the group.’ And this, he said, will affect the presidential elections of 2022,” she added.
Duterte-Carpio acknowledged, though, that she raised the hands of Velasco and Leyte Rep.-elect Martin Romualdez as potential candidates for the speakership because they are “supportive of the reform agenda of President [Rodrigo] Duterte.”
She, however, stressed that she has not yet made any recommendation as to the next House Speaker.
“I only have a personal bet but do not intend to influence Congress,” she said.
“It is best if the newly elected members of the House of Representatives individually decide who among those who are interested to become the next Speaker can truly bring good governance and positive change to Congress, to the Filipino people, and to our country,” Duterte-Carpio added.
She likewise refused to second-guess the possibility that her own brother, Paolo Duterte, will vie for the speakership after winning the first legislative district seat of Davao City.
“The question on the interest of Congressman-elect Paolo Duterte to vie for Speaker should best be addressed by our father because he is the President and our patriarch,” she said.
Romualdez, for his part, underlined that an effective House Speaker must be “consultative, sensitive to local concerns, and generous with time and resources as well as very accessible.”
“You have to be the congressmen’s congressman...God willing, that’s my position; we would have to engage the congressmen without exception,” he said.
At a news conference Wednesday, House Minority Leader Danilo Suarez said a big number of congressmen was supporting the speakership bid of Romualdez.
Suarez said a signature campaign for Romualdez had been gathering support with at least 126 signatures.
“It is our manifesto of support for Martin,” Suarez said.
READ: Romualdez, Tingog thank Sara, voters for supportREAD: Romualdez is next Speaker–Sara
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