Cayetano: 2 groups offered deal for Senate presidency

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 25 2016 12:09 PM

Senator Alan Peter Cayetano

Senator Alan Peter Cayetano admitted Monday that his dream of becoming Senate President did not come to pass after he turned down the offers of two separate groups.

In a Facebook post titled "Losing What Was Never Mine Keeping What's Important to Me", Cayetano, running-mate of President Rodrigo Duterte in the May polls, said he turned down the offers of two groups because he wanted to protect the President.

"[Two] groups offered me a deal. Taking just 1 of the two offers would have made me Senate President. Yet somehow I was never tempted to take the deal..." he said in the Facebook post.

Cayetano said he made a commitment during the May 7 miting de avance to help and protect the President who would initiate "revolutionary change in our country."

"I thought long and hard about it and I asked myself, how could a deal that made me [Senate President] but put the President and his agenda in jeopardy, be one that helps or protects him?" he wrote.

"I asked myself this question since I promised myself I will only get it if I can help and protect the President and his agenda, otherwise I'll be inutil (sic), powerful yet powerless," he added.

Cayetano urged the Filipino people to pray for the Senate so that it would be used as an instrument of change "and not a tool for status quo."

He then gave the following message to President Duterte.

"Today, Mr President one of my dreams passed me by, I'm not Senate President, Yet I'm excited to hear your SONA and be a part of the amazing change! This is our dream! Dream of all Filipinos! And this is more important!" he wrote.

Cayetano was a no-show at the opening of the 17th Congress on Monday, the same day that senators elected Senator Koko Pimentel as the new Senate president.

A total of 20 senators voted for Pimentel as the leader of the Upper Chamber, with three voting for Sen. Ralph Recto.

Cayetano, running mate of President Rodrigo Duterte, was earlier touted as a possible contender for the position of Senate President before majority of senators backed Pimentel for the position.

'Senate presidency a toss-up between Alan, Koko'

Senator Tito Sotto earlier said Cayetano did not want Senator Panfilo Lacson to be the head of the public order committee, Senator Loren Legarda to be the head of the finance committee, and Senator Manny Pacquiao as chairman of the committee on games and amusements.

Sotto: Cayetano had demands on Senate committee chairmanships

Cayetano also rejected Senator Leila De Lima, a former Justice secretary and a vocal critic of President Duterte, as the new head of the Senate justice committee.

Cayetano questions Pimentel's choices for committee chairs

Before the vote, Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV said it would not look good if Cayetano would want to join the Senate minority.

"Kung magiging minority siya, hindi magiging maganda ang dating. Parang, I believe it is childish and immature for him to do that kasi magkasama sila ni President Duterte," he said.

"[Bakit childish?] Kasi hindi niya nakuha ang gusto niya. Dapat he should be man enough to admit na he lost. He should move on."