MANILA, 22July213 (PNA) – As widely expected, Quezon City Rep. Feliciano Belmonte Jr. was overwhelmingly re-elected as House Speaker of the 16h Congress garnering 245 votes against his rivals’ total of 34 votes.
San Juan Rep. Ronaldo Zamora was the closest, getting 18 votes, automatically making him the Minority Leader, edging Leyte Rep. Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, who got 16 votes.
Belmonte took his oath of office before Camiguin Rep. Xavier Jesus Romualdo, the youngest member of the House.
By tradition, the youngest House member administers the oath of office to the incoming Speaker.
The Speaker said he was humbled by the vote of confidence given to him by his peers.
“I am deeply humbled by your vote of confidence and it is an honor to be once more the leader of this chamber,” he said.
Meanwhile, six Deputy Speakers were immediately appointed after Belmonte’s assumption.
They are Representatives Henedina Abad (Batanes), Giorgidi Aggabao (Isabela), Sergio Apostol (Leyte), Pangalian Balindong (Lanao del Sur), Carlos Padilla (Nueva Viscaya) and Roberto Puno (Antipolo).
Mandaluyong Rep. Neptali Gonzales II was reelected majority floor leader. (PNA)