Villafuerte: No need for ouster plot, Andaya should just resign
MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Camarines Sur 2nd District Representative Luis Raymund Villafuerte Jr said House Majority Leader Rolando Andaya Jr should just resign because ousting him would be a waste of time for legislators.
Villafuerte did not mince words against his political rival after Rappler sought him for comment on the coup that he was supposedly plotting against Andaya on Friday, January 11.
While denying the ouster plot against Andaya, Villafuerte claimed their colleagues at the House of Representatives are already “fed up with his obstructionist ways,” as Andaya continued to lead an investigation on Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno and his family.
“There is no need for any plot in the House of Representatives to have Rep. Andaya kicked out as our majority leader for subverting President Duterte's growth and development agenda and committing acts inimical to the interests of the majority coalition and of the Filipino people in general,” Villafuerte said in a text message.
He then noted that Andaya himself already said he did want the majority leadership in the first place.
“He would be doing everyone, and not only himself, a favor by resigning on Monday because he has become the odd man out in the House leadership by derailing the approval of the already-delayed GAA (General Appropriations Act) bill—in contravention of his job as floor leader, which is to shepherd through the bigger chamber the passage of the priority bills of President Duterte such as the 2019 budget bill,” said Villafuerte.
There have been talks in the House that Villafuerte is allegedly plotting to remove his bitter rival Andaya as House leader.
Following these rumors, Andaya said he would be the first to vote to remove himself as Majority Leader if things escalate in the House, saying he found the job as “forced labor.” But he also said he will push through with the probe against Diokno.
Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, however, belittled the ouster rumors and said the majority of lawmakers still support Andaya, including her.
On Monday, January 14, Andaya called his political enemy as "salimpusa" or a minorp player in the House, adding that Villafuerte is often absent.
"Absent ka lagi. Ibig sabihin, [ikaw ay] non-entity," said the Majority Leader. (You're always absent. This means you're a non-entity.)
Andaya, who served as budget chief during the Arroyo administration, has had a long-running rivalry with Villafuerte. Andaya will run against reelectionist Governor Miguel Luis Villafuerte, the congressman's son, in the May elections.
Andaya also had shouting match with Villafuerte, together with former Davao City 1st District representative and now Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, over the proposed P3.757-trillion budget for 2019. – Rappler.com
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