Cayetano provokes defiance

'Disobedience' campaign is simmering in the House of Representatives as the opening of session draws near.

Members of the House of Representatives will elect the Speaker when the 18th Congress convenes for the first time on Monday morning.

President Rodrigo Duterte will deliver his fourth State of the Nation Address a few hours after the Speaker has been elected.

Despite Duterte’s endorsement of Taguig-Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano as Speaker, some congressmen who are reportedly ‘peeved’ by his alleged high-handedness have reportedly launched a silent ‘disobedience’ campaign meant to elect a Speaker other than the Duterte-endorsed Cayetano.

Some congressmen are reportedly unhappy with the recent statements of Cayetano in his unending Facebook live posts, such as the issue on the creation of new deputy speaker posts, Charter Change to limit the term of senators, among others.

A congressman who asked not to be named said “at the rate he (Cayetano) is creating deputy speaker positions to ensure his election we may end up having 300 or so deputy speakers.”

Latest to be offered a deputy speaker position is Davao City Rep Paolo Duterte who Cayetano offered the ‘non ‘existent position of deputy speaker for political affairs.’

There used to be only one deputy speaker but then Speaker Jose de Venecia created positions of deputy speaker for each of the country’s island groups—Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. Until in the last 17th Congress, there were 12 deputy speakers.

Cayetano said he would create several deputy speaker positions such as those for health, education, tranportation, etc.

Another congressman frowned on Cayetano’s idea, saying the House had standing committees at the Lower House to take care of government agencies involved in it.

“Why is there a need for deputy apeakers for those functions?” the congressman asked.

The lawmaker-source said Cayetano was still “insecure” of getting the top House post, thus he promised heaven and earth to congressmen to ensure that they would vote for him.

“What is this? He doesn't trust the endorsement of the President.”

This developed as Cayetano appeared confident he would secure the House’s top post despite resistance of many congressmen.

Cayetano, the presumptive Speaker, said he would hit the road running and immediately tackle committee chairmanships and memberships for the smooth and fast work in the chamber once seasion started. 

However, Cayetano’s statements might do him in because many congressmen are peeved by his posturing.

Topics: House of Representatives , 18th Congress , Rodrigo Duterte , State of the Nation Address , Alan Peter Cayetano
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