Martin1 Leyte 1st District Rep. Martin G. Romualdez

‘Speaker Romualdez’

July 24, 2022 Ryan Ponce Pacpaco 448 views

Majority of House members seen to overwhelmingly elect Leyte solon as

MAJORITY of members of the House of Representatives are expected to overwhelmingly elect this Monday morning Leyte 1st District Rep. Martin G. Romualdez as Speaker of the 19th Congress before the first State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. in the afternoon.

Surigao del Norte Rep. Robert Ace Barbers, Bulacan Rep. Salvador “Ador” Pleyto, and Pampanga Rep. Aurelio “Dong” Gonzales Jr. said Romualdez has a sterling performance record as House Majority Leader under the leaderships of both former Speakers Alan Peter Cayetano and Lord Alan Velasco.

Barbers said Romualdez is known as a consensus-builder who helped stabilize political turmoil among members of the august chamber during the reported Velasco-Cayetano speakership rift in October 2020.

“He was also credited for steering the House minority and majority members in the passage of crucial pieces of legislation such as the Bayanihan 1 and 2 to help alleviate economically the welfare of Filipinos badly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Barbers said.

Pleyto said Romualdez is a “good leader, very humble and kind. Intelligent and supportive to everyone.”

“We will elect him as our Speaker. He has the full support of our party, PDP-Laban, and almost all political groups in the House led by his own Lakas-CMD, which he heads as president,” Gonzales, a former deputy speaker, for his part said.

Gonzales said Romualdez deserves to lead the House.

“He was in the running for the speakership in 2019 but settled for the position of majority leader to promote camaraderie and unity in the House. He politely and patiently waited for his time to become Speaker while doing his job well. Forbearance and the capacity for self-sacrifice are his virtues. And the time has now come for him to be our leader,” Gonzales said.

Gonzales pointed out that Romualdez honed his skills as a politician and parliamentarian through years of experience.

“Those skills will come in handy as our new Speaker shepherds the House in support of the legislative and unity agenda of President Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr.,” he added.

Gonzales also described the Leyte lawmaker as a “consensus builder, who always listens to the concerns of his colleagues, his constituents and the people.”

Romualdez, Barbers said, is an amiable House leader who always consults and listen to his colleagues, always possess positive outlook, pushing harmony among members of the opposition block, and thereby gaining or earning trust and respect from the majority of his fellow lawmakers

“It’s an honor and a privilege to vote for Majo Romualdez as House Speaker for the 19th Congress, he being a consensus-builder and a hard-working lawmaker who can go beyond the political divide just to ensure the timely passage of former President Duterte’s priority measures,” Barbers said.

Barbers, whose family also has kins from Ilocos Sur, said the House leader from Leyte chaired the Defeat COVID-19 Ad-Hoc Committee which worked overtime to meet and consult stakeholders and formulate policies aimed at mitigating the ill-effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“His (Romualdez’s) unity message as desired by President Marcos would be a great asset and support to the 19th Congress as well as to the visons and aspirations of the Marcos administration,” he said.

Gonzales said following tradition, aside from electing its new Speaker on its first day of session, the House is expected to vote for its other officers, including some deputy speakers and committee chairmen, and the chamber’s secretary general and sergeant-at-arms.

He said Reginald “Reggie” Velasco, who served as deputy secretary general and spokesman of National Unity Party, would most likely be elected as House secretary general.