MAJORITY of the lawmakers at the House of Representatives still support House Majority Floor Leader Rolando Andaya Jr., according to Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

“As far as I can see, the majority supports the incumbent,” she said during her visit to the coastal village of Batang, Sasmuan, Pampanga amid reports that Camarines Sur 2nd District Rep. Luis Raymund Villafuerte is convincing lawmakers to support the supposed ouster plot against Andaya.

Arroyo herself said she supports Andaya, but will not force the others to do the same.

“I am only one vote, I’d still vote for Nonoy. I exercise democracy, I think you’ve seen, in the House. I’m very open-minded. The only enforcing I do is only those in the Rules like when there’s no quorum. Those are the only forcing I do,” Arroyo said, referring to Andaya.

“That I think Nonoy can take care of himself. I am not an interventionist person on political matters,” she added.

An ouster plot has allegedly been hatched against Andaya because of the latter’s investigation into the 2019 budget.

Andaya has been verbally attacking Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno since last December over the alleged anomalies in the 2019 budget, more specifically on the supposed insertions in the 2019 budget and the questionable allocations for Sorsogon.

In a statement on Thursday, January 10, Andaya said he will be the first to vote if he will be ousted as Majority Leader.

“To me this post is forced labor. Gusto ko na nga ma-relieve ng duties as Majority Leader noon pa. When this was first offered to me, I begged off a hundred times. Nagtago pa nga ako,” he said.

“Many would give their arm and leg for this position. I see it however as a burden,” Andaya added.

Andaya, however, said no one can stop him from pursuing the investigation on the alleged flood control scam and the other anomalous budget practices under Diokno.

Andaya and Villafuerte’s son Governor Miguel Luis Villafuerte are political rivals in the gubernatorial race in Camarines Sur in the May 2019 elections. (SunStar Philippines)