DAVAO City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio challenges Anakalusugan Rep. Mike Defensor to name the source of the text message claiming she urged the House Representatives to reject Taguig Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano as the next House Speaker.
This came on the heels of Defensor confirming on Monday, July 8, that he received a text message from a neophyte House member from Davao whom he refused to name.
He said the sender was “very close” to Duterte-Carpio.
Defensor said the text message urged members of the House of Representatives to vote their desired candidates for the Speakership, and disregard Cayetano, who was endorsed by President Rodrigo Duterte
"Kaya nananawagan siya ngayon sa lahat ng mga congressmen na bumoto ayon sa kanilang kagustuhan dahil ang kaniyang ama ay na set-up lamang ng mga gahaman na Gabinete na kaalyado kay Cayetano.' – Mayor Inday (So she is now urging congressmen to vote whoever they want because her father was just set-up by greedy Cabinet members who are allied with Cayetano. – Mayor Inday.)," the text message said, as read by Defensor.
However, the lady mayor on Wednesday morning, July 10, denied his claim and asked "to stop sowing intrigue and to name the source in his pronouncements to allow people to verify the truth of his claim."
"Give us the name of the neophyte member of the House of Representatives from whom you received a text message with a supposed message coming from me. A responsible individual would have asked me if there is truth to the text," Duterte-Carpio said in an official statement.
"I reiterate for Rep. Defensor to name his source because I have a reputation to protect and I have the right to confront a person who is spreading disinformation. Otherwise, we can all say that you are your own source," the mayor also said.
She said that she never had any plans on interfering in the Speakership selection.
"In fact, it was Rep. Defensor who reached out to me thru Atty. Charo Munsayac. Making last minute requests for Rep. Romualdez to which I said that I will not interfere in that matter," Duterte-Carpio said.
She also said she had a screenshot of her conversation with Munsayac as proof of her claim.
"Should I have anything to say about what happened On July 8, I will not cowardly hide behind an alleged 'panawagan'," the mayor said.
Defensor, a vocal supporter of Romualdez's Speakership, had then apologized on Wednesday afternoon for dragging the Mayor's name.
"I apologize to Mayor Inday Sara if I have in anyway offended her with my statement," Defensor said in an official statement.
"I did not say it came from her or a congressman. In fact, I should not have shown it because reading it again it had Inday Sara’s name. I did say though that there was another person who got the same message. I apologize Ma’am if I have offended you," Defensor added.