THE Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats party on Monday forged an alliance with the 40-strong National Unity Party to strengthen its support to incoming Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, the representative of Davao del Norte.
Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez, president of the Lakas-CMD, expressed belief that detained former president and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who ran and won unopposed for her third and last term, will “play a key role in the 17th Congress should the Supreme Court allow her bail petition.”
“She is a former president who can contribute to the development of the country, a brilliant and a working one,” Romualdez said.
The Lakas-CMD’s alliance with the NUP came a week after the party of then President Arroyo entered an agreement with the PDP-Laban, stressing the latest partnership was about helping Alvarez to push the legislative agenda of Duterte, Romualdez said.
“We concur with the coalition agreement. This is not similar to the coalition agreement we signed with the PDP-Laban. This is to strengthen the support of legislative agenda of incoming President Rody Duterte under the leadership of Alvarez as Speaker,” said Romualdez, the head of the House’s Independent Bloc.
“We [Lakas-CMD and Kampi] used to have very close ties, in fact we were very close until 2010. We are reuniting in pursuing the agenda of President Duterte.”
Said Reginald Velasco, NUP secretary general: “The purpose of this [agreement] is to unite forces to have a common legislative agenda. Both parties will be supporting incoming President Rodrigo Duterte and incoming Speaker Alvarez.”
Like Lakas-CMD, Velasco said, the NUP would also enter into a coalition with PDP-Laban, the party that pushed Duterte to the presidency.
“The NUP will sign a separate agreement with the PDP-Laban. The NUP has 40 committed members and there are more congressmen who would like to join the NUP,” Velasco said.