MANILA -- The Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) has endorsed Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco for Speaker at the House of Representatives in the upcoming 18th Congress, Senator Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao announced on Wednesday.
"I am therefore announcing the endorsement and support of PDP Laban for Congressman Lord Allan Velasco as Speaker of the House of Representatives in the full term of the 18th Congress," Pacquiao said.
Pacquiao noted that the majority of the party members have signed a manifesto of support for the Marinduque lawmaker.
"At least majority ng PDP-Laban ang nag-support kay Lord Velasco (At least majority of PDP-Laban have supported Lord Velasco [as the new Speaker])," Pacquiao said.
The manifesto highlighted that Velasco possesses the leadership qualities to "steer and unite" the lower chamber in the passage of "crucial legislative reforms" in support of the legislative agenda of President Rodrigo Duterte in order to "safeguard the country's economic gains and social progress."
"We believe that Representative Lord Allan Jay Velasco is the best choice to lead the House of Representatives in the 18th Congress given his experience, competence, and strong camaraderie with his colleagues in the House of Representatives," the manifesto read.
Among the notable signatories of the manifesto include PDP-Laban Executive Vice President and Pampanga Rep. Aurelio Gonzales, as well as Party-list Coalition President and 1-Pacman Rep. Michael Romero.
Among the PDP-Laban members who are eyeing the post are Gonzales and former Speaker and reelected Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez, who is seeking to reclaim the House speakership that he lost during a coup last year.
The contenders outside PDP-Laban are Leyte congressman-elect Martin Romualdez of Lakas-CMD (Christian Muslim Democrats) and Taguig congressman-elect Alan Peter Cayetano of Nacionalista Party. (PNA)