MANILA - Lawmakers will elect Taguig-Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano as House Speaker during the opening of the 18th Congress, a Cabinet official said Monday.
Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles made the remark amid speculation of a coup d'etat at the House of Representatives before the President's fourth State of the Nation Address.
"I think the Congress persons will be electing Alan Peter Cayetano as the Speaker for the 18th Congress. I think lahat naman ng kongresista ay naguusap-usap na, lahat ng partido, coalition. I think plantsado na yan," he told ANC's Early Edition.
"We don’t expect any surprises as far as this morning’s election for Speakership, including the majority leader."
Cayetano on Sunday met with lawmakers and asserted that the House of Representatives remains united and independent.
The presumptive Speaker and Davao City Rep. Paolo Duterte, who earlier hinted at a House coup, will hold separate breakfast meetings ahead of the SONA.
Nograles said Cayetano will also attend Cong. Duterte's meeting, which would be held ahead of his own.
The Cabinet official, meantime, said the legislative agenda of the President for the 18th Congress will include the passage of the National Land Use Act, Budget Reform Act, Coconut Levy Fund, Department of Disaster and Resilience, mandatory ROTC, Freedom of Information bill, and Strengthening the Human Security Act among others.