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Paolo Duterte: Elect a new Speaker after Cayetano’s 15-month term

MANILA, Philippines — Davao City 1st District Rep. Paolo Duterte on Monday said the House should elect a new Speaker after Taguig-Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano’s 15-month term ends.

President Rodrigo Duterte’s son made the manifestation before nominating Cayetano for Speaker. Former Speaker aspirants, Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez and Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco also nominated Duterte’s running mate in the 2016 presidential elections.

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“The term sharing agreement is one between congressman Cayetano, Romualdez, Velasco and the President. I am against any term sharing agreement, however, if the Speaker resigns after 15 months, then we will have to elect a new Speaker,” Paolo said during the chamber’s first regular session of the 18th Congress.

The “Duterte Coalition” stalwart then nominated Cayetano and described him as a leader who “understands local and national governance,” can “bridge different branches of government,” and can “ably and fearlessly represent the House in the international arena.”

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The President has endorsed the term-sharing between Cayetano and Velasco, with Romualdez sitting as majority leader. But Paolo Duterte earlier hinted at a looming coup fueling speculations that his group “Duterte Coalition” would insist on installing as Speaker Davao City 3rd District Rep. Isidro Ungab.

The 1987 Constitution mandates that the Speaker shall be elected by a majority vote of all the members through a roll call vote. Voting for the House top post is ongoing as of posting. /muf

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