LAWMAKERS yesterday welcomed the excellent working relationship of President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte and speakership candidate and Leyte Representative-elect Martin Romualdez to address the need to modernize the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and decongest the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
House Majority Leader and Capiz Rep. Fredenil “Fred” Castro and Anakalusugan party-list Representative-elect Mike Defensor was referring to the joint visit of President Duterte and Romualdez late Wednesday afternoon to the Philippine Army 8th Infantry Division at Camp General Vicente Lukban in Catbalogan City, Samar to award nine wounded soldiers in a military hospital there and consult about soldiers’ concerns.
“It also suggests that PRRD is now, even before Martin’s [possible] election as Speaker, collaborates in addressing the needs of our country. This also shows that they could work and be complementary to each other. It is a good sign of the Executive and Legislative incoming working relations,” said Castro, president of the National Unity Party (NUP).
During the event, well-placed sources bared that President Duterte called Romualdez as Mr. Speaker in several instances in front of government and military officials led by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and presidential adviser for the Visayas Michael Dino.
Last week, President Duterte asked Romualdez to join him in a surprise visit in the NAIA, where the Chief Executive issued directives to ease congestion at the country’s premier airport. Sources said President Duterte also called him Mr. Speaker.
“Very impressive because, it suggests his (Romualdez) concern for the military personnel who are out in the field offering their lives against internal and external threats. It also suggests that PRRD is now, even before Martin’s election as Speaker, collaborates in addressing the needs of our country,” Castro pointed out.
For his part, Defensor, a returning congressman, said “the visit conducted by the President with Cong. Martin highlights how our national leaders should act as statesmen connected with the needs of our people especially the military.”