(“I’m not kapit tuko”)Lobregat eased out as Public Works Chair PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 05 September 2018 14:32

by bhong simbajon

Marikina Congressman Jose Bayani Fernando took over yesterday as the new House Committee Chairman on Public Works and Highways replacing Zamboanga Congressman Celso Lobregat.

In an interview with RMN Zamboanga, Lobregat said that Fernando took over as the new Public Works Committee Chair after being designated by the new leadership of the House of Representatives.

Recall that Pampanga Congresswoman Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo took over from Davao Representative Pantaleon Alvarez during a change of leadership at the House of Representatives in July.

Lobregat, a known ally of Alvarez, is the PDP-Laban local Chairman in Zamboanga City.

The recent change in leadership led to an immediate reshuffle of chairmanships in the House of Representatives with Arroyo allies taking over the helm of coveted committees from their former chairmen.

Lobregat said that he was informed by a close ally of Arroyo last week that there were more congressmen lobbying for chairmanship positions.

Later that week, Congressman Bayani Fernando took over the helm of the Public Works Committee from former Chairman, Congressman Lobregat.

Zamboanga District 2 Representative Mannix Dalipe took over the vice-chairmanship of the committee from Congressman Munir Arbison of Sulu.

Dalipe was said to have supported the takeover by Arroyo of the House Speakership.

Lobregat, meanwhile, transferred to the majority bloc upon the assumption of Arroyo as the House’s new Speaker.

Lobregat said that he never lobbied for the position of committee chairmanship in the DPWH.  He said that it was offered to him by then Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez who is his partymate in the PDP.

"I am grateful to former Speaker Alvarez for his trust and confidence given me to hold such chairmanship.  I serve at the pleasure of the House leadership and thanks for the trust," Lobregat said.

Lobregat added that Congressman Fernando was a known ally of Speaker Arroyo and the former DPWH Secretary during her past administration as President.

"I am not Kapit Tuko in any position, it was given to me so i got it.  it just so happens that there is a new leadership now.  We have to abide by it. But this will give me more time to concentrate on the forthcoming campaign after filing of candidacy next month. (Bhong Simbajon/RMN News)