Three senior leaders of the House of Representatives identified with former Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano lost their posts Wednesday in a massive purge of the Taguig lawmaker’s loyalists in the chamber.
About a month after Speaker Lord Allan Velasco assumed the top House position, Cayetano allies Capiz Rep. Fredenil Castro, Laguna Rep. Dan Fernandez, and Batangas Rep. Raneo Abu were removed as deputy speakers.
They were replaced by Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez, Buhay Party-list Rep. Lito Atienza, and Las Piñas City Rep. Camille Villar.
Castro and Fernandez were among the most vocal solons against Velasco during the speakership row that started in September.
Castro, who held on to his post despite Cayetano’s ouster, ironically said in a speech at the height of the clash that those who support Velasco’s speakership bid should quit their leadership posts.
Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Raymund Villafuerte, another vocal Cayetano ally, was the first to be sacked as deputy speaker.
In Wednesday’s session, the House also elected Pampanga Rep. Mikey Arroyo as chairman of the House Committee on Energy, the position Velasco vacated when he became Speaker.
Caloocan City Rep. Dale Malapitan was elected head of the House contingent to the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal.
ACT-CIS Rep. Eric Go Yap, on the other hand, was elected vice chairman of the House Committee on Accounts, now chaired by Davao City Rep. Paolo Duterte, the President’s son.
Velasco was designated legislative caretaker of the First District of Cebu City following the death of Rep. Raul del Mar.
Deputy Majority Leader Xavier Jesus Romualdo, who made the motion, said it was the wish of the late lawmaker’s family.
Former Batangas Rep. Mark Llandro Mendoza was elected as the new House Secretary General vice lawyer Jocelia Bighani Sipin, who resigned.