‘Triple A Boys’ slammed over franchise row

SPEAKER Alan Peter Cayetano late Saturday evening hit his “freeloader-detractors” whom he called “Triple A Boys” in Congress or “absent” during legislative duties, “pro-ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corporation” franchise renewal and busy waiting for the release of “allotments.”

Refraining from identifying them in his Facebook post, Cayetano said the “Triple A Boys” seem against the reforms being instituted by his leadership in the House of Representatives.

“I believe in silver linings -- so thank you to the Triple A Boys in Congress -- iyung mga puro absent, sipsip sa ABSCBN, at yung mga nag-aantay lang ng allotments -- you’ve shown me just how desperately we need to reform this institution. You have strengthened my resolve to continue the fight,” said Cayetano who earlier accused Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco of plotting to unseat him which the latter denied vehemently.

“I believe most members of Congress see and appreciate the reforms I stand for. If they do, then I will continue to serve as their Speaker. If they don’t, then they can remove me, I will continue to serve as the Representative of Taguig and Pateros. I will continue the lonely fight with whoever will join me,” Cayetano said.

In a related development, Kabayan party-list Rep. Ron Salo lashed out at Buhay Hayaang Yumabong (Buhay) party-list Rep. Lito Atienza for claiming that Cayetano had merely concocted a plot to remove him from the top post in the House of Representatives.

Aside from Atienza, Salo also took to task Puwersa ng Bayaning Atleta (PBA) party-list Rep. Jericho “Koko” Nograles for saying that an ouster plot against Cayetano makes no sense since Velasco is only a few months away from taking over the Speakership.

Salo said the plot to unseat Cayetano is real as confirmed to him by several lawmakers who spoke about Velasco’s alleged offers of committee chairmanships and increased budgetary allocations for projects under both the 2020 and 2021 national budgets in exchange for their support for his supposed coup plan.

He also criticized former Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo “Albe” Benitez for issuing a statement on the issue on behalf of the Visayan Bloc in the House of Representatives.

Deputy Speaker and Camarines Sur Rep. LRay Villafuerte said the alleged coup against Cayetano “puts into question the commitment of Velasco to the pro-poor, pro-growth legislative agenda of President Duterte, if and when he does become Speaker, considering that he has no qualms now to subvert the 1521 term-sharing arrangement that was brokered by President Duterte no less, before the 18th Congress opened last year.”