MANILA, Philippines — Amid the speakership row, Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco said Friday Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano is doing everything to achieve his “personal ambition” of being elected as the President of the country in 2022.
In an interview with ABS-CBN News, Velasco once again underscored that the term-sharing agreement between him and Cayetano should be honored.
“Ang kinakalungkot ko lang sa mga panahon ngayon, I don’t know what Speaker Cayetano is fighting for. Ang tingin ko talaga diyan, he’s fighting for his own personal interest and ambitions,” Velasco said.
(What I am saddened about is in these times, I don’t know what Speaker Cayetano is fighting for. I think he’s fighting for his own personal interest and ambitions.)
“Speaker Cayetano is doing everything just to be able to achieve his ambition, his personal ambition and interest na maging Presidente ng 2022 (to become President in 2022),” he added.
Velasco pointed his fingers at the recent events in the House such as the unexpected early second reading approval of the proposed 2021 budget which was consequently followed by the suspension of the session until November 16.
With the suspension of the session, it meant that there would be no session on October 14, the expected date for the speakership to finally be settled.
“Akalain mo naman, guluhin nya yung buong budget process. Why? Because of out fear… Inuuna muna niya ang kanyang political survival before the survival of our country,” Velasco said.
(Imagine, he messed up the budget process. Why? Because of fear… He put first the political survival before the survival of the country.)
Not throwing in the towel
Velasco said he is not giving up on the speakership deal, saying that leaders have to show the public that they are true to their words.
“We are called honorables mainly because we try to keep our honor. Kailangan natin kapag nagbibitaw tayo ng salita, tinutupad natin (If we give our word, we should stick by it),” Velasco said.
Calling himself an “ordinary congressman”, Velasco said he will change the system in the lower chamber since the leadership only revolves around one group.
“What’s been happening in Congress right now, yun ang babaguhin natin. Why? Because ang leadership sa Congress, nakaipit lang sa iilang tao, sa isang barkada,” Cayetano said.
(We will change what is happening in Congress right now. Why? Because the leadership in Congress is being controlled by one group of friends.)
“I want a leadership that is not controlled by a few, but a leadership that is shared by all,” he added.
Velasco said each congressmen should also be given an opportunity to show their capabilities as he pointed out that the public is only seeing a few people speaking in the committee hearings.
“Nakita natin ang inequalities ng pagbibigay ng mga programs and projects sa mga districts. At the end of the day, I would always look at fair and equitable distribution ng mga opportunities at mga projects at programs sa mga distrito,” Velasco said.
(We saw the inequalities in the distribution of programs and projects to the districts. At the end of the day, I would always look at the fair and equitable distribution of opportunities as well as projects and programs to the districts.)
“‘Yun ang king type of leadership (That is my type of leadership),” he added.
Under the term-sharing agreement, Cayetano would serve as House Speaker in the first 15 months of the 18th Congress while Velasco would succeed to serve for the remaining 21 months.