- Allan Velasco denied he is behind ouster plot against Arroyo
- Rumor of another coup in the House surfaced following a row between lawmakers over budget insertions
- Velasco has expressed his ‘unequivocal’ support for the former president
MANILA, Philippines – What goes around comes around?
Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is barely warming in her seat as the first ever female leader of the Lower House, and this early rumors are being circulated of a possible attempt to oust her; barely two months since replacing Pantaleon Alvarez.
A prominent name that is reportedly being groomed to replace Arroyo is Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco whose name has cropped up as the potential Speaker of the House as early as April this year.
This after a row between lawmakers broke out over the P55-B alleged insertions in the 2019 budget of which Arroyo wants to distribute equally among all her colleagues but was met with opposition.
This also allegedly led to the shouting match between House Appropriations Committee Chairman Karlo Nograles and Majority Leader Rolando Andaya; a known Arroyo ally who served as Budget secretary during her administration.
ABS-CBN News reported highly-placed sources in the House has named Velasco as Arroyo’s possible replacement should the ouster plot against her succeed.
However, Velasco said there was never any such plan to unseat the former president.
“I categorically deny any involvement in any plans whatsoever to unseat the Speaker,” said Velasco. “As you can see, I didn’t aspire for such positions then, in the same way that I am not aspiring for the speakership now.”
The Marinduque solon, a rising power broker in the House, also assured GMA that he is not behind any plan to challenge her leadership.
“I wish to put to rest all further rumor-mongering. We are unequivocal in our support for Speaker GMA from day one and oppose attempts to sow disunity and mistrust in the House,” he added.