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Romualdez keen on being Speaker in 18th Congress

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Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD) president Martin Romualdez on Monday confirmed that he is eyeing the Speakership post in the 18th Congress, following statements made by Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) chairperson and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte that he is “interested” in becoming the next House leader.

“I confirm the statement of Mayor Sara that I am interested in the Speakership race of the 18th Congress,” Romualdez said in a text message to media when asked to comment.

“Many congressmen aspire for that position. I am humbled and honored that she (Mayor Sara) mentioned my name as one of the contenders,” he added.

Furthermore, Romualdez, who was Leyte First District representative from June 2007 to June 2016, reaffirmed his commitment to the legislative agenda of President Rodrigo Duterte.

“As a Malacañang ally, it is my duty to push the legislative agenda of the President. At the moment, I am working very hard to ensure my victory in the coming election,” he said.

Romualdez’s confirmation of his run for the Speakership post creates a possible four-way fight for the fourth highest position of the land.

Also reportedly eyeing the Speakership are former Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano and Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco.

Cayetano, who is running for representative of Taguig City and Pateros, was the former running mate of President Duterte.

On the other hand, Velasco is the son of retired Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Presbitero Velasco, and has been very visible in HNP sorties for its senatorial bets.

Tthe ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP Laban) announced last week the possibility of having ousted Speaker and Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez to return to his old post as Speaker.

However, unlike the other contenders who are running unopposed in their respective districts, Alvarez is facing Gov. Antonio Rafael del Rosario in his reelection bid.

Del Rosario is a candidate of Sara Duterte’s HNP. (PNA)