Mayor Sara: Romualdez next Speaker

Sara Duterte & Martin Romualdez
ROMUALDEZ NEXT SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE --- Davao City Mayor and Hugpong ng Pagbabago Regional Party Chairperson Sara Duterte introduces Lakas-CMD Party President and Leyte 1st district congressional candidate Atty Martin Romualdez (2nd left) as the next Speaker of the House of Representatives during the grand campaign rally of Hugpong ng Pagbabago and Tingog Party List led by Leyte (1st Dist) Representative and 1st Nominee Yedda Marie K. Romualdez at the Tacloban City Astrodome attended by more than 25,000 government officials and supporters. Other photo shows Mayor Duterte (center), Rep. Romualdez (7th from L) and Lakas-CMD Party President and Leyte 1st district congressional candidate Atty. Martin Romualdez (9th from L) flashing President Rodrigo Duterte’s trademark fist gesture together with HNP’s senatorial lineup during the campaign rally. Photos by Ver Noveno

“ANG Hugpong ng Pagbabago po kasama ang aming supporters, ang Tingog Sinirangan party-list at si Cong. Martin Romualdez ang susunod natin na speaker sa House of Representatives ay nag-iiwan po ng bukas na invitation sa inyong lahat na bumisita ng Davao City.”

Thus Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) chairperson and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte said yesterday as she endorsed Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (CMD) President Martin Romualdez as Speaker of the incoming 18th Congress.

Duterte, daughter of President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte, introduced Romualdez, a three-term congressman of Leyte’s first district, as the next Speaker during yesterday’s campaign sortie held at the jampacked Tacloban City Convention Center or the Tacloban Astrodome here.

“Ang Hugpong ng Pagbabago po kasama ang aming supporters, ang Tingog Sinirangan party-list at si Cong. Martin Romualdez ang susunod natin na speaker sa House of Representatives ay nag-iiwan po ng bukas na invitation sa inyong lahat na bumisita ng Davao City,” Duterte told the crowd where she,  Romualdez, and Tingog first nominee and Leyte Rep. Yedda Marie Romualdez campaigned for the senatorial bets of HNP.

“Ulitin ko po ang sinabi ko noong last time na nandito ako, ako ay masaya na nakahiram ako ng microphone ninyo at nakatayo ako sa stage ninyo upang personal na magpasalamat sa inyong lahat. Meron po kaming malaking utang na loob sa inyong lahat,” Duterte added in the rally hosted by the Romualdezes.

Responding to Carpio, Romualdez thanked the Davao City mayor for the endorsement.

“Nabubulunan na ko dito [kasi] dalawang beses sinabi ni Ma’am Inday Sara na ako ang magiging next Speaker of the House. Salamat po ma’am sa tiwala at kumpiyansa sa akin. I am humbled by the mere mentioning of my name,” Romualdez responded during the rally.

Romualdez also said that “I am very thankful, honored and grateful for the endorsement given to me by Mayor Sara in what is going to be a competitive speakership race.”

“As a Malacañang ally, I am committed to push the legislative agenda of the President. Right now, I am working very hard to ensure my victory in the coming election,” said Romualdez.

Duterte drove from Catarman, Northern Samar to Tacloban City, the capital of Eastern Visayas on board his motorcycle for six hours as HNP kicked off its Visayas leg campaign caravan for its senatorial slate and allied candidates in the region led by Tingog party-list.

The 13 senatorial candidates of HNP are reelectionist Sens. Sonny Angara, Cynthia Villar, Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, and Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito, Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee Marcos, former presidential assistant Bong Go, former Sens. Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada and Bong Revilla, Deputy Speaker and Taguig City Rep. Pia Cayetano, former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Bato dela Rosa, Maguindanao Rep. Zajid Mangudadatu, Dr. Willie Ong and former presidential political adviser Francis Tolentino.

In Tacloban City, Duterte delivered her message of change, urging the audience to vote for Tingog and Hugpong’s senatoriables in the upcoming May 13 elections.

“We owe a lot from the people of Eastern Visayas for their support to President Rodrigo Duterte. I’ll take this opportunity to express our gratitude to everyone,” said Dutere.

She also thanked the local leaders headed by Yedda Romualdez, Martin Romualdez, Tacloban mayoral candidate Alfred Romualdez, Tacloban Vice Mayor Jerry Yaokasin, Eastern Samar Governor Marcelo Ferdinand Picardal, Vice Goveror Jonas Abuda, Eastern Samar Lone District congressional candidate Christopher Sheen Gonzales, and Leyte Second District Representative Henry Ong, among other officials.

In her speech, Duterte believed that most of the problems in national will be solved in the local level, the reason why she is pushing for Tingog as a regional party-list group.

Meanwhile, Yedda Romualdez said the alliance between Tingog and Hugpong “will pave the way for a farther reach of the advocacies of both parties through the provision of mutual support.”

“As a regional political party in Region, Tingog aims to articulate the principles, hopes and aspirations of the people of Eastern Visayas in their common pursuit towards transformational politics, genuine shared governance and the full development of the country’s social, geographic and economic peripheries leading to the creation of a truly democratic representative democracy and the building of an inclusive and progressive Filipino community,” said Yedda Romualdez.

The other nominees of Tingog are Jude Acidre, Jamie Go, Alexis Yu, and Jenifer Padual.