Palace: No Duterte’s hand on Arroyo speakership
Malacanang challenged Thursday any lawmaker to come out and say that President Rodrigo Duterte tried to influence the House of Representatives to install former President and Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to be the new Speaker.
Contrary to the claim of detained Senator Leila de Lima that Duterte was behind Arroyo’s return to power, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said that the choice of Speaker was made by the members of the House alone.
“And I challenge any congressman to publicly say that the President called them to vote for a particular candidate because the President did not do that. The President did not interfere. This was purely a decision of the members of the House of Representatives,” he said in a press briefing in Zamboanga Sibugay.
De Lima has blamed Duterte for Arroyo’s return to power despite the alleged massive corruption in the government during her stint as president.
Roque also said the Palace is eager and ready to work with the new House leadership.
“We are confident that Speaker Arroyo would put her considerable skills and experience behind PRRD’s (Duterte’s) agenda,” he said.
Arroyo replaced Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez, who was ousted as Speaker of the House Monday, July 23.
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