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By Prince Golez

President Rodrigo Duterte has expressed exasperation over the leadership row involving House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano and Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco.

“In principle, the President does not want to be involved in politics,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a televised briefing Monday.

“‘Natagam na ako’. ‘Natagam’ is the Visayan word for ‘Nadala na ako’. Yan po ang verbatim na sinabi ng Presidente nung siya ay nanawagan sa mga kongresista natin na isantabi po ang politika,” added Roque.

According to him, Duterte wants the House of Representatives to pass the budget measure first before raising the speakership issue.

Tuesday last week, Cayetano moved to suspend plenary deliberations on the 2021 budget until November 16 without passing the measure on third and final reading.

“Ang sinabi po ng Pangulo, ipasa muna ang budget. Anything they do after the budget is the affair of the House of Representatives,” said Roque said.

“Wala na siyang pakialam matapos ang 2021 national budget. Wala po siyang pinapapanigan, may the best man win,” he also said.

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