Paolo Duterte considering joining House speaker race

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Davao City 1st District Representative Paolo Duterte said Tuesday, July 2, he was considering running for the speaker in the House of Representatives.

The son of President Rodrigo Duterte has previously said he had no interest in the position, but changed his mind because of talks of "term sharing" being pushed by Taguig City-Pateros 1st District Representative Alan Peter Cayetano. 

Moapil na ko pagka-speaker (I will also join the speakership race),” said Representative Duterte.

“The house is divided, I might be able to help unite it. Pareho lang kaming binoto ng mga tao ah. Kung term sharing, term sharing na kaming lahat (We were all elected by the people. If it's term sharing they want, then let's all have term sharing),” the president's son said.

Earlier, President Duterte said he would resign from the presidency if his son Paolo wanted to become House Speaker.

"Itong si Paolo, sabihin ko sa kanya, if you run for speakership, let me know. Kasi kung tatakbo ka, magre-resign ako," said Duterte.

(This Paolo, let me tell him, if you run for speakership, let me know. Because if you run, I will resign.)

"If he insists on running, if he believes in his advisers, go ahead. Let me know 3 days in advance before you make the announcement and I will tender my resignation," added the President.

The President said: "...vice mayor, anak ko, 'yung youngest son ko si Baste, and Pulong as Speaker, ako ang Presidente, hindi na maganda tingnan," said Duterte. 

(The (Davao) vice mayor, my youngest son Baste, and Pulong as Speaker, me as President, it wouldn't look good.)

Aside from Paolo, his sister and youngest brother, Sara and Sebastian, are Davao City mayor and vice mayor, respectively.

Representative Duterte said he would propose that the position of speaker of the House be shared by representatives from Mindanao, Visayas, Luzon, and the partylist groups.

“I will ask the Visayas bloc to elect their speaker for their term share, and so with the Mindanao bloc and the partylist coalition,” Duterte said.

“We are not talking about two persons here. We are talking about our beloved country. It is not about speakership alone, but who is the right person to unite congress and I hope those running for the speakership stop influencing the cabinet,” he further said.

Aside from Duterte and Cayetano, also aspiring to be House Speaker were Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Velasco, who was endorsed by PDP-LabanLeyte 1st District Representative Martin Romualdez, the Lakas-CMD president; and former speaker now Davao del Norte 1st District Representative Pantaleon Alvarez 

 

Cayetano claimed Velsaco had reneged on their earlier agreement to a term-sharing scheme for Speaker.

President Duterte said the term-sharing between Cayetano and Velasco was his idea. "This is what I said. You split a term. Cayetano wanted to go first. But he will stay there just for 15 months. That's what he committed. Velasco can have the other half which is not really as short – 21 months," said the President.  – Rappler.com