Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano (Taguig-Pateros) on Tuesday afternoon shared a biblical quote and thanked his supporters in a lengthy Facebook post following his resignation as house speaker.
The House of Representatives formally ratified Rep. Lord Allan Velasco (Marinduque) as the new speaker on Tuesday, October 13, a day after 186 lawmakers voted for him during an informal session held Monday at Celebrity Sports Plaza in Quezon City.
Prior to the ratification, Cayetano announced his “irrevocable resignation” through a Facebook live from his home, therefore ending weeks of political mudslinging between the two officials vying for the fourth highest position in the country.
“Right now, verbally, I am tendering my irrevocable resignation as the speaker of the House of the Republic of the Philippines,” Cayetano said.
“At 3 p.m., elect your new speaker and pass the budget… Walang maneuvers at political tactics na mangyayari diyan,” he added.
Taguig-Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano tendered his "irrevocable resignation" as speaker of the House of Representatives on Tuesday. pic.twitter.com/Z5pdodvhUt
— The Philippine Star (@PhilippineStar) October 13, 2020
Both Cayetano and Velasco are supposedly under a term-sharing or “gentleman’s agreement” brokered by President Rodrigo Duterte last year, wherein the former will serve for 15 months and the latter for the remaining 21 months of the 18th Congress.
In a meeting with Duterte last week, both parties reportedly agreed that the leadership change will take place on October 14.
Goodbyes from Cayetano?
In his statement on Facebook, Cayetano cited the biblical verse Psalm 51: 10-12, which states:
“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.”
"Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence, and take…
Cayetano also bared that his decision to step down came after Duterte’s stern reminder to them to focus and pass the proposed 2021 national budget, which was already approved into second reading.
“From the start I have always said that I will abide by what the President, as leader of our coalition, will say. Today, given the untenable political situation that Congress has been placed, and the possible damage to the country if the 2021 budget is not passed on time,” the solon said.
“I take his admonition to ‘put aside all politics and focus on the budget’ to heart, and with this, tender my irrevocable resignation as Speaker of the House of Representatives effective immediately. I go now with a clear conscience. I have done my best, I have given my all, I leave with no regrets, and I hold no rancor in my heart towards anyone,” he added.
Despite still being a lawmaker, Cayetano expressed a heartfelt and lengthy gratitude for the friendships he made with his colleagues who supported him and his policies in the lower chamber.
He also thanked the rest of the congressional employees and the staff and noted that he gained a “new level of respect” for their work.
Moreover, he urged the Filipino public to be more vigilant following the election of the new speaker.
“Congress has recently made huge headways in pushing for greater transparency and accountability in the crafting of our laws, let us not allow this to be for nothing. Maraming Salamat aking mga kababayan. GOD Bless us all,” he concluded
Apologies to Duterte
The tension between the camps of Velasco and Cayetano were heightened after the latter suddenly suspended the interpellations of the budget hearing and passed the proposed measure to the second reading.
The chief executive reportedly met with them again to discuss the matter.
Cayetano then apologized to Duterte and claimed that he misunderstood his orders.
“Mr. President, if I made a mistake, kung mali po ang reading ko, if I misunderstood na ituloy at tapusin ko ang budget, ako’y humihingi ng paumanhin. Hindi ko intention na hindi ka sundin,” he said.