Speaker Alan Cayetano will not hand over his seat to Marinduque Rep. Lord Alan Velasco.
This was revealed by a source inside his camp as the deadline for his “1521” power sharing agreement with Velasco which was brokered by President Rodrigo Duterte himself in May 2019.
“The Speaker has no intention of stepping down,” said the source who requested anonymity for lack of authority to speak for Cayetano.
Cayetano’s main adviser is National Unity Party chairperson and former interior chief Ronaldo “Ronnie” Puno, a veteran campaign manager and backroom politics expert who was played a key role in helping then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo parry attemps to ease her out of power from 2004 to 2010.
Moves to declare the Speakership vacant plays into the hands of Cayetano who should turn over the post to Velasco by October 1 (the end of his 15th month in office while Velasco would serve the remaining 21 months) under their gentleman’s agreement.
A vote would scuttle the power sharing deal and give Cayetano better odds of staying.
But a lawmaker belonging to the Velasco camp stressed that the fate of the Speakership was solely in the hands of Duterte.
“Isang salita lang ni Presidente, kung gusto pa niya si Alan o gusto si Lord na, susunod lahat sa kanya ang buong Congress,” the source said.