The Philippine Star : Romualdez-led House eyes postponing barangay polls, passing 'BBM' stimulus bill

By The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Deferring the barangay elections and passing a stimulus bill named after presumptive president Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. will be among the priority legislation under the leadership of Rep. Martin Romualdez (Leyte) should he be elected as speaker of the House of Representatives in the 19th Congress.

Romualdez, now the leading candidate for the speakership as he is backed by several political parties and a coalition of party-lists, bared this Thursday at a luncheon with members of administration party PDP-Laban in an upscale hotel in Mandaluyong City.

Speaking to reporters after the luncheon, Romualdez said barangay chairpersons from the Liga ng mga Barangay asked for the postponement of barangay polls which are scheduled to be held in December.

“This will be one of the items in our priority agenda for it to prosper prior to it becoming moot,” he said partly in Filipino.

Romualdez said that postponing the barangay elections would save the government P8.141 billion which can be used for the continuing response to the pandemic, cash aid and economic stimulus.

The incumbent House majority leader also set his eyes on passing a stimulus package named after his cousin Marcos’ initials called the “Bayan Bangon Muli bill.”

Details are still scant on the proposal, aside from Romualdez saying that this will “allow the incoming president to harness the resources available to him during this closing period of 2022 and address the measures that are needed for the pandemic” and “to harness whatever remaining resources to stimulate the economy and to reinvigorate it for the better of all.”

Without going into detail, Romualdez said there are “a host of priority measures” before Marcos, but they have not formally met to talk about these proposals.