MANILA—Vice President Sara Duterte-Carpio and former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo got together hours after the former bolted the Lakas-CMD party, which she once shared with Arroyo and Speaker Martin Romualdez.
Arroyo posted a picture of their lunch on her Facebook page.
“Picture was taken after May 19 lunch hosted by Mr. Manny Pangilinan to celebrate the birthdays of Vice-President Sara Duterte, former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, San Pedro Mayor Art Mercado (far right) and Mr. Bong Santamaria (far left). Second from right is former Undersecretary Pearl Viernes,” Arroyo’s Facebook page said.
Arroyo’s birthday was last April 5, while Duterte-Carpio’s birthday is on May 31.
Duterte-Carpio hours earlier announced her resignation from the Lakas-CMD, which came days after the House of Representatives demoted Arroyo from Senior Deputy Speaker to Deputy Speaker.
In her resignation statement, she said, “I am here today because of the trust of the Filipino people in me to lead and serve them and the country, and this cannot be poisoned by political toxicity or undermined by execrable political powerplay. “
The Vice President however did not make any reference to the events in the House.
Arroyo earlier said she heard she was being tagged in an alleged coup against Romualdez, which she in turn flatly denied, stressing that the speakership is not her objective anymore.
Arroyo had been Speaker once, in 2018, in a controversial coup that delayed then President Rodrigo Duterte’s State of the Nation Address that year because of a standoff with then-Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez.
Duterte-Carpio had been credited for her elevation to the Speakership.
Romualdez meantime has been silent, but parties supporting him in the House have come out with their own statements of support.