Thank you, Lord: Makabayan bloc hails Velasco’s stand vs. red-tagging

Published October 30, 2020, 12:50 PM

by Ellson Quismorio

The Makabayan bloc on Friday expressed its appreciation to newly-installed House Speaker, Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Velasco, for speaking against red-tagging.

Speaker Lord Allan Velasco (Lord Allan Velasco’s Office / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

“Pinapasalamatan namin higit sa lahat ang aming bagong Speaker, si Speaker Lord Velasco na nagpalabas din ng kanyang statement, kinokondena ang terrorist-tagging na ito sa miyembro ng Makabayan bloc at in general itong unfounded at baseless accusation na ito sa iba pang personalities (Most of all, we thank our new Speaker, Speaker Lord Velasco who also released his own statement condemning the terrorists-tagging among members of the Makabayan bloc and in general the unfounded and baseless accusations against other personalities),” Bayan Muna Party-List Rep. Carlos Zarate said in virtual press conference.

Zarate, the most senior member of the six-member Makabayan, also thanked the new Minority Leader, ABANG LINGKOD Party-List Rep. Joseph Stephen Paduano for giving similar statements of support to the militant House faction.

The Makabayan belongs to the broader Minority bloc, which has 22 members.

Zarate said: “Kinokondena natin ito at darating yung araw na magiging accountable itong mga ito sa kanilang mga kasinungalingan (We condemn this and the day will come that they will be held accountable for their lies).”

Last Tuesday, Velasco slammed Parlade for his “careless accusations” against the House members and challenged him to produce evidence against them.

“General Parlade should be more circumspect and cautious in issuing statements against House members whose lives he may place at great risk and danger sans strong evidence. I hope he will refrain from issuing unrestrained statements that also carry serious repercussions,” said Velasco, who assumed the House’s top post only last October 13.

The Marinduque solon said that as Speaker, he is duty-bound to protect his colleagues from potential harm so that they may carry their legal and constitutional mandate as members of Congress.

Makabayan also earned support from erstwhile Minority Leader, Manila 6th district Rep. Bienvenido Abante Jr., who even went as far as asking for Usec. Lorraine Badoy’s resignation as NTF-ELCAC mouthpiece during the plenary budget deliberations. Abante has since joined the Majority bloc to support the Velasco Speakership.

Abante’s successor in Paduano has also chided Parlade, calling the army general “a loose cannon” whose words “can do more harm than good to the government’s anti-insurgency efforts.”

“He better file a case in court or shut up if he has no evidence to show,” Paduano said in a statement.