Coup attempt vs. Cayetano ‘wishful thinking’: Duterte

HOUSE SPEAKERSHIP. President Rodrigo Roa Duterte shares a light moment with some of the distinguished guests during the Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) Thanksgiving Night at the Peninsula Manila in Makati City on June 24, 2019. With the President are Taguig congressman-elect Alan Peter Alan Peter Cayetano (seated, second from left), Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco (seated, middle), and Leyte first district Rep. Martin Romualdez (right). Also in photo are House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (seated), Senator-elect Christopher Lawrence "Bong" Go (standing, left), and Senator-elect Francis Tolentino. (Presidential Photo)

By Azer Parrocha  

 

MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday night dismissed the remark made by his son, Davao City Rep. Paolo Duterte, that there may be a coup for the House speakership despite the recent agreement among three contenders vying for the post.

Duterte earlier announced that he will endorse Taguig Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano and Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco for House Speaker under term-sharing arrangement while Leyte 1st District Rep. Martin Romualdez agreed to be House Majority Leader.

The younger Duterte said he is interested to find out who will win because of reports that one of the three bets plans to launch a coup on July 22 when the 18th Congress opens its first regular session and members of the House of Representatives elect their next Speaker.

“Have you heard of wishful thinking?” Duterte replied when asked about his son’s remark in a chance media interview after his event in Malacañang Palace.

The President, meanwhile, said he has no doubts that Cayetano, his bet for House Speaker, will get enough votes during the election of the lower chamber’s next leader.

“Alan? He will (get enough votes),” Duterte said.

Earlier, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo admitted that not everyone can be “satisfied” by Duterte’s choice for the House of Representatives’ top post.

“Well, you cannot satisfy everybody. But from what I hear, iyon na yun (that’s it),” Panelo said in a Palace briefing on Thursday.

Panelo said the House will have to accept the President’s decision because at least three lawmakers approached him to endorse a candidate in the first place.

However, he said the vote of the House Speaker would still depend on the members of the lower chamber.

“The only reason why the President gave that suggestion is that those vying for it went to him and sought his wise suggestion to settle the row between and among them,” Panelo said.

“The President didn’t want to interfere in the first place, didn’t wanna intrude. It’s them who somehow persuaded him to come in,” he added. (PNA)

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