MANILA - It was an answered prayer for Taguig Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano, who triumphed at getting President Rodrigo Duterte's endorsement for the House of Representatives speakership.
Although he will have to share the term with rival Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco, as announced by Duterte Monday, Cayetano vowed to make the House of Representatives a "congress of the people."
"We prayed to the Lord to give the president good health and wisdom...we thank him for the announcement that he has made," said Cayetano in a video addressing his Facebook followers, minutes after Duterte's announcement.
Chief Presidential Legal Counsel and Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the speakership race was "a bitter and fractious rivalry" that needed Duterte's intervention.
Cayetano will be the Speaker in the first 15 months, then Velasco will take over for the rest of the term, which is around 21 months. Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez will be the Majority Floor Leader.
Cayetano offered his victory to the Lord, and even quoted a Bible verse.
"Para sa ating Panginoon, para sa ating bayan, let's all work together and lets not make it about politicians, about ourselves, about the Duterte administration, something that will uplift kabuhayan ng bawat Pilipino," Cayetano added.
Cayetano also urged fellow lawmakers to unite.
"Sa lahat ng congressman, please join the Die-hard Duterte Super Majority-- the DDSM-- has come to town. We're going to show that it's not only the president ang pwedeng magkaroon ng political will kundi po pati ang ating House of Representatives," he added.