House of Representatives’ Majority Leader Martin Romualdez on Saturday expressed commitment to continuously work with all blocs at the chamber to shepherd the priority measures of the Duterte administration.
Romualdez’s statement came as former Speaker and Taguig Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano formed the “BTS sa Kongreso” coalition or “Back to Service,” where Romualdez’s friend, Anakalusugan Rep. Mike Defensor is a member.
“I respect Mike’s diligence, views, and opinions, political and otherwise,” the president of Lakas-CMD, who is also representing his congressional district in Leyte, said in a statement.
Last Thursday, Cayetano launched his coalition with five other former House leaders as members, aside from Defensor.
During the coalition’s launch in Quezon City, Defensor, former chairperson of the House Committee on Public Accounts, mentioned his being a close ally of Romualdez and an affiliate of the erstwhile administration party Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (CMD).
“Congressman Mike Defensor is a friend, a dear friend. It is also true that he is affiliated with our party, the Lakas-CMD, along other party-list congressmen and congresswomen who we consider as allies in the House of Representatives,” Romualdez said in response.
“More than a friend to Mike, I am the Majority Leader of the House of Representatives. It is my duty to work as a leader not only of the majority coalition, but also of the minority and independent House Members,” Romualdez stressed.
Cayetano earlier said his bloc “aims to bring back service to the heart of legislators.”
Cayetano lamented the fact that the House under the leadership of his predecessor, Speaker Lord Allan Velasco, had become focused on politics as evidenced by current moves to amend the Constitution.
He admitted that using “BTS” was intended to “get people’s attention” since it is also the name of the South Korean boy band considered to be the biggest musical act in the world today.
He said in the case of the new group, “BTS” means two things: “back to service Congress” and “bayanihan, tapang, serbisyo” (cooperation, courage, service).”
The other members of the BTS bloc are Reps. Luis Raymund Villafuerte Jr, Camarines Sur 2nd District; Dan Fernandez, Laguna 1st District; Raneo Abu, Batangas 2nd District; Jose Antonio Sy-Alvarado, Bulacan 1st District; and Fredenil Castro, Capiz 2nd District.
The choice of “BTS” had received a backlash from fans — who call themselves the Army — who did not appreciate the boy band’s name being used by politicians.
COMMENT DISCLAIMER: Reader comments posted on this Web site are not in any way endorsed by Manila Standard. Comments are views by manilastandard.net readers who exercise their right to free expression and they do not necessarily represent or reflect the position or viewpoint of manilastandard.net. While reserving this publication’s right to delete comments that are deemed offensive, indecent or inconsistent with Manila Standard editorial standards, Manila Standard may not be held liable for any false information posted by readers in this comments section.