PRRD may change mind about Paolo’s possible bid for speakership

MANILA Although President Rodrigo Duterte previously said that he will resign if his son, Davao City Rep. Paolo Duterte, decides to join the House speakership race, MalacaAang said the chief executive may still change his mind.

You make a stand on the basis of circumstances. When those circumstances change, you also change your stand, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a Palace briefing on Tuesday.

Panelo did not elaborate of what circumstances he meant but stressed that while the President could still change his mind, his son could do the same.

Puwede rin magbago ng isip si Presidente, puwede rin magbago ng isip si Congressman Paolo Duterte so tingnan natin (The President may change his mind, Congressman Paolo may also change his mind. Let us see), Panelo said.

Ang isang tao pag nagsalita ng isang bagay, seryoso 'yun (A person, when he says something, that's serious) unless there are circumstances that will compel him to alter his stand so hindi natin alam kung ano yung mga kalakaran na maaring magpabago ng isip ng Presidente (we don't know what are the circumstances that may change his mind), he added.

Panelo, meanwhile, played down Paolo's desire to join the House speakership race as just a plan.

Plano pa lang naman 'yun e (It's just a plan). Siguro (Perhaps) we will wait for that to happen kung totoong mangyayari (if it will really happen), Panelo said.

Di pa naman nagiging Speaker e (He's not even Speaker yet), he added.

Panelo, however, acknowledged that every person has the right to any position as long as he or she is qualified or elected.

You cannot prevent people from running. Now, it's between the father and son, ibang usapan na 'yun (that's a different story) but as a general principle, if you are qualified to run then you can run, Panelo said.

Paolo's decision

In a statement, Paolo bared that while he initially had no interest in the position, he had a change of heart after Taguig Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano, who is also vying for House Speaker, expressed desire to push for a term-sharing deal between him and Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco.

The younger Duterte is proposing that the House Speaker post be shared by representatives from Mindanao, Visayas, Luzon, and the party-list groups.

We are not talking about two persons here. We are talking about our beloved country. It is not about speakership alone, but who is the right person to unite Congress and I hope those running for the speakership stop influencing the cabinet, Paolo said.

On May 27, Duterte said he would step down once Paolo chooses to seek House speakership since his winning could mean too many members of their family occupying top posts.

Itong si Paolo, sabihin ko sa kanya (I told Paolo), if you run for speakership, let me know. Kasi kung tatakbo ka, magre-resign ako. Kasi marami na tayo (because if you're running, I will resign. Because there's too many of us now), Duterte said.

Duterte's daughter, Sara, is currently Davao City mayor while his youngest son, Sebastian, nicknamed Baste is vice mayor.

The President, a former Davao City mayor for over two decades, admitted that he has no control over his son's decisions but appealed to him to tell him of his intentions of running for speakership three days before he announces it in public. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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