Former House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano’s prediction that Speaker Lord Allan Jay Velasco will be ousted after a month in power may not have come true, but a speakership battle might be brewing again soon.
The head of an influential political party in the House of Representatives told Politiko that a growing number of lawmakers are getting disillusioned with Velasco over his arrogance and absence of leadership.
The buzz inside Batasang Pambansa is he’s spending more time settling scores with his enemies than rallying lawmakers together– as he promised he would– to pass meaningful legislation.
The political party executive was so incensed at Velasco’ arrogance that he exclaimed, “Umayos-ayos ‘yang si Velasco, kundi ipapa-kudeta ko siya!”
The veteran politiko isn’t just making an empty threat. As head of a major political party, he can command his party mates to withdraw support from Velasco. And with an influential backer who’s respected by fellow politikos until now, it’s easy for the party to gain allies to unseat the Speaker.
But who will replace Velasco? Cayetano has long been rumored to be eyeing a comeback after his ouster in October. Another potential contender is House Majority Leader Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, who managed to keep his post after the contentious speakership battle.
It was recently reported that more lawmakers preferred Romualdez over Velasco as Speaker, due to the former’s experience and skill in building camaraderie.