A YouTube video is claiming that President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has appointed SAGIP Party-list Rep. Rodante Marcoleta as House Speaker to replace Martin Romualdez. This is false. There is no such directive from Marcos, who also has no power to do so.
Uploaded on Dec. 3, the video bore the headline:
“KAKAPASOK LANG Biglaang Utos! PresMarcos Cong.Marcoleta bilang Speaker sa Kongreso Pinalitan na (Just in sudden order! President Marcos Cong. Marcoleta as Speaker in Congress. Already replaced).”
Its thumbnail also carried a text saying “IPALIT SI MARCOLETA. ITO ANG MATINDING UTOS SA PANGULO. KUDETA NA (Replace with Marcoleta! This is an intense order to the president. A coup d’etat is here)!” along with photos of Romualdez, Marcoleta and Marcos supposedly holding a document bearing such orders.
The president has no power to appoint or dismiss any lawmaker from the House of Representatives, including the speaker. Under the 1987 Constitution, only House members can elect or remove a speaker after a two-thirds vote.
Romualdez, the president’s cousin, remains as speaker. There are no moves to oust the House leader, who in fact received support from fellow lawmakers after he was criticized by former president Rodrigo Duterte.
Reverse image search also found that Marcos’ photo on the thumbnail was mirrored. The original photo was taken on July 31 by the Associated Press and shows that the president was not holding any document.
Note: Click on the photo to view its original source.
The erroneous video emerged days after an SMNI program host alleged that Romualdez spent P1.8 billion for foreign travels in a year. House Secretary General Reginald Velasco denied this claim in a Nov. 28 statement, saying two days later that the speaker just spent P4.34 million for foreign trips.
To support its false claim, the video merely showed posts from netizens urging Marcos to have Marcoleta replace Romualdez, along with a previously fact-checked vlogger’s commentary on Romualdez’s travel spending.
Uploaded by YouTube channels PINAS NEWS INSIDER, AI TOO KAYE and XCREW, the video has garnered a total of 143,980 interactions. Facebook users also reposted the links.
VERA Files Fact Check has debunked claims about Romualdez being fired or suspended from office, and Marcoleta being appointed to different government posts.
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