MALACAÑANG on Thursday respects the decision of seven party-list lawmakers belonging to militant Makabayan bloc to bolt out from the majority in the House of Representatives.
Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said the Duterte administration had expressed hope that it could still work together with the Makabayan bloc even after it abandoned the House super majority.
"We take due notice of the decision of the seven partylist representatives belonging to the Makabayan bloc to leave the House of Representatives majority coalition," Abella said in a statement.
"We were hopeful that they would remain open to working together with the administration, particularly on pro-poor, pro-people issues," he added.
Abella's statement came after the Makabayan bloc announced earlier in the day its defection from the House super majority and creation of an "independent bloc" that would "intensify opposition to the Duterte administration."
Members of Makabayan bloc include Representatives Antonio Tinio and France Castro of ACT Teachers; Emmie de Jesus and Arlene Brosas of Gabriela Women's; Carlos Zarate of Bayan Muna; Ariel Casilao of Anakpawis; and Sarah Elago of Kabataan.
Following its decision to cut ties with the Duterte administration, the Makabayan bloc said it would challenge the "fascist, pro-imperialist, and anti-people regime."
"Today, we, seven party-list representatives of the Makabayan bloc, declare our separation from the Majority Coalition in the House of Representatives to intensify our opposition to the Duterte administration that has now fully unraveled as a fascist, pro-imperialist, and anti-people regime," the group said in a statement. (SunStar Philippines)