MANILA (UPDATE) - Ruling party PDP-Laban will soon announce its official nominee for House speakership in the incoming 18th Congress.
Contenders for the post are Marinduque Lone District Rep. Lord Allan Velasco, Pampanga 3rd District Rep. Aurelio “Dong” Gonzales and Davao del Norte 1st District Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez.
The party's president, Sen. Koko Pimentel, appointed Sen. Manny Pacquiao to announce PDP-Laban's nominee.
The lawmakers met Tuesday night in a dinner hosted by Pacquiao at his home in Forbes Park, Makati City.
"The PDP Laban, the party of President [Rodrigo] Duterte, is the biggest bloc in Congress with more than 94 representatives on top the partylist congressmen allied with us and therefore it is imperative that the Speaker should be come from PDP-Laban," Pimentel said in a statement.
He added, "We will stand united in ensuring that we will have a Speaker who can truly work not only with his peers in the House but also with the members of the Senate."
The new speaker will be elected in July when congressmen who secured fresh 3-year terms in the May 13 polls convene the 18th Congress.
Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is at the end of her third consecutive term as Pampanga congresswoman and was not eligible for reelection.
Alvarez is seeking to reclaim his post after he was ousted in a coup last year that installed Arroyo as speaker. - With reports from Sherrie Ann Torres, ABS-CBN News