Duterte won’t meddle in House speakership race

MANILA MalacaAang on Monday said President Rodrigo Duterte will not meddle in the selection of the next speaker of the House of Representatives.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo made this remark after reelectionist Sen. Aquilino Pimentel III said the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino�Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) is poised to secure the House leadership.

Di naman siya nakikialam pagdating sa election sa Congress (The President doesn't meddle with elections in the Congress), said Panelo in a Palace briefing.

Ibang usapan na iyong Speakership fight (The Speakership fight is a different story), it's among themselves, he added.

There are three PDP-Laban members seeking to replace former President and now Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

These are Pampanga Rep. Aurelio Gonzales, Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco, and former speaker and re-elected Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez, who is seeking to reclaim the House Speakership that he lost during a coup last year.

Panelo said it does not matter to President Rodrigo Duterte that the next House Speaker would still be from the PDP-Laban.

Kasi Presidente nga (The President), since he's not interfering with the functions of both Houses. Kasi (Because) as far as the President is concerned: Hinalal kayo diyan, alam ninyo naman iyong mga tungkulin ninyo (You were elected there, you know your duties), Panelo said.

Tayong lahat ay mga (We're all) workers of the government, dapat palagi ang lahat ng gagawin natin, pabor sa mga kababayan natin at sa ating bansa (everything we do should be in favor of our citizens and our country), he added.

Pimentel earlier said it would be a crying shame if the next Speakership does not go to a PDP-Laban member since they have a deep bench of competent party leaders who will push for the President's legislative agenda. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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