Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Philippines

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Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Philippines
Philippine House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte.jpg
Feliciano Belmonte, Jr.

since July 22, 2013
Style The Honorable
Mr. Speaker
(Within the House)
Appointer Elected by the Philippine House of Representatives
Inaugural holder Sergio Osmeña
Formation October 16, 1907
Website Speaker of the House

The Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Philippines is the presiding officer of the lower house of Congress, the House of Representatives. The Speaker is elected by a majority of all of the representatives.

The Speaker is the third and last in line in succession for the presidency, after the President of the Senate of the Philippines, and Vice President of the Philippines.

A speaker may be removed from office by death or resignation. In some cases a Speaker may be compelled to resign at the middle of a Congress' session after he has lost support of the majority of congressmen; in that case, an election for a new speaker is held.

Despite being a partisan official, the speaker (or whoever is presiding) doesn't vote unless in breaking ties.

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Election, duties and powers

When the office of the Speaker is vacant (usually at the beginning of a new Congress), the Secretary-General of the House sits as the Speaker until a person is elected. A speaker is usually elected via majority vote via roll call of the representatives, after nomination at the start of each new Congress. Usually, despite the current multi-party system used, only two representatives are nominated, with nominations being agreed upon before each Congress during caucuses between the administration and opposition coalitions, with the chosen candidate of the majority coalition being almost certain to win by a large margin. The two competing candidates by tradition vote for each other; those who voted for the speaker-elect is assigned as the "majority" coalition while those who didn't are the minority coalition, with the losing candidate usually being named as Minority Leader.

In the 2013 election, there were three candidates for the speakership. In this case, the candidates didn't vote for each other, and the second-placed candidate became Minority Leader and headed the minority bloc. The third-placed candidate became the leader of the "independent minority" bloc. Only the majority and minority blocs were given seats in committees. There was a chance that neither candidate would get a majority of votes; it is undetermined on what should be done if that happened.

'Duties and Powers of the Speaker.'

According to Section 15 of Rule 4 of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the duties and powers of the Speaker as the political and administrative head of the House are as follows:

a.prepare the legislative agenda for every regular session, establish systems and procedures to ensure full deliberation and swift approval of measures included therein, and may, for the purpose, avail of the assistance of the Deputy Speakers, the Majority Leader, the Chairpersons of the standing committees and other Members of the House;

b. conduct regular monthly caucus of all Members or groups thereof or as often as may be necessary to discuss priority measures and to facilitate dialogue, consensus and action on issues and concerns affecting the House and the performance of its functions; c. exercise general supervision over all committees and, in furtherance thereof, conduct regular monthly meetings with the Chairpersons and Vice-Chairpersons of all standing and special committees to set legislative targets, review performance in the attainment of targets, ensure that the priority legislative measures of committees are attuned to the legislative agenda of the House, and resolve such other issues and concerns that affect the operations and performance of the committees;

d. as far as practicable, establish an efficient information management system in the House utilizing among others, modern digital technology, that can:

1. facilitate access to and dissemination of data and information needed in legislation inclusive of facilitating real time translation of plenary proceedings in the major Philippine dialects and languages;

2. provide a simplified and comprehensive process of gathering, recording, storage and retrieval of data and information relating to activities and proceedings of the House;

3.sustain a public information program that will provide accessible, timely and accurate information relating to the House, its Members and officers, its committees and its legislative concerns inclusive of facilitating, as far as practicable, broadcast coverage of plenary and committee proceedings;

e. establish an efficient and effective system to monitor and evaluate the performance of legislative tasks and duties of the House, its Members and its committees; f. establish coordinative linkages with the Senate of the Philippines to efficiently monitor and facilitate Senate action on House measures pending with the same; g. preside over the sessions of the House and decide all questions of order subject to appeal by any Member who may explain the appeal in not more than five (5) minutes: Provided, That the appeal shall not be subject to debate, and no explanation of vote shall be allowed in case of nominal voting;

h. designate a Member as temporary presiding officer after informing the Deputy Speakers: Provided, That any such designation shall be effective for one session day only; i. take appropriate measures as may be deemed advisable or as the House may direct, to preserve order and decorum in the session hall, the galleries, lobbies, chambers, offices, corridors and premises of the House; j. sign all acts, resolutions, memorials, writs, warrants and subpoenae that may be issued by or upon order of the House;

k. perform administrative functions such as, among others: k1. appointment of personnel of the House with authority to delegate this power;

k2. suspension, dismissal or imposition of other disciplinary measures on House personnel in accordance with Civil Service rules: Provided, That the suspension or dismissal of the Secretary General and the Sergeant-at-Arms shall take effect only upon the concurrence of the majority of all the Members;

k3. consolidation or splitting of vacant positions carrying salaries and wages which may be increased or reduced in the process, and/or creation of new positions in accordance with the General Appropriations Act: Provided, That the total amount involved shall not exceed the total amount appropriated for the salaries and wages of the personnel of the House; and

k4. implementation of merit-based policies and programs on personnel recruitment, training and development, promotions, incentives and benefits to ensure that the House has a corps of competent professionals able to provide needed legislative support services;

l. prepare the annual budget of the House with the assistance of the Committee on Accounts; m. in consultation with the Committee on Rules, prepare the rules and regulations governing public access to personal data and related information, including statements of assets and liabilities, of Members of the House;

n. in consultation with the Minority Leader, shall develop through an appropriate entity of the House a system for drug testing in the House of Representatives, which may provide for the testing of any Member, officer, or employee of the House, and otherwise shall be comparable in scope to the system for drug testing in the executive branch, Provided, That the expenses of the system may be paid from applicable accounts of the House for official expenses; and

o. require the submission of performance reports at the end of every regular session and fiscal year from the committee chairpersons, the Secretary General and the Sergeant-at-Arms, and such other reports as may be required from all concerned officers and offices of the House.

And according to Section 16 of the Rule 4 of the Rules of the House, the Speaker must " be the permanent head of delegation and representative of the House in all international parliamentary gatherings and organizations: Provided, that the Speaker may designate any Member to be the representative of the Speaker. The Speaker shall also determine, upon the recommendation of the Majority Leader, in consultation with the Chairperson of the Committee on Inter-Parliamentary Relations and Diplomacy, who shall constitute the House delegation to any international conference or forum of parliamentarians and legislators and the secretariat support staff to be mobilized for the purpose."

List of Speakers


In some lists that count only the Speakers of the House of Representatives, the Speakers of the Batasang Pambansa are excluded; in that case, subtract 2 from every number from Mitra onwards.

# Speaker Party District Legislature Start of service End of service Era
1 Sergio Osmeña Nacionalista Cebu 1st Legislature - 5th Legislature 1907 1922 American Insular Government
2 Manuel Roxas Nacionalista Capiz 6th Legislature - 9th Legislature 1922 1933
3 Quintin Paredes Nacionalista Abra 10th Legislature 1933 1935
4 Gil Montilla Nacionalista Negros Occidental 1st Assembly November 25, 1935 December 30, 1938 Commonwealth
5 José Yulo Nacionalista Negros Occidental 2nd Assembly January 24, 1939 December 30, 1941
During the Japanese invasion of the Philippines, the Commonwealth went into exile in the United States and the National Assembly was dissolved. It was replaced by the unrelated National Assembly of the Japanese-sponsored Second Republic. Second Republic
6 Benigno Aquino, Sr. KALIBAPI Tarlac At-Large National Assembly October 17, 1943 February 2, 1944
After the liberation, the winners of the 1941 elections were finally able to assume their positions. Commonwealth
7 Jose Zulueta Nacionalista
Liberal wing
Iloilo-1st 1st Commonwealth Congress June 9, 1945 December 20, 1945
After the restoration of the Commonwealth, new elections were held to elect new members of the House of Representatives.
8 Eugenio Pérez Liberal Pangasinan-2nd 2nd Commonwealth Congress May 25, 1946 July 4, 1946
1st Congress July 5, 1946 December 30, 1949 Third Republic
2nd Congress December 30, 1949 December 30, 1953
9 José Laurel, Jr. Nacionalista Batangas-3rd 3rd Congress January 25, 1954 December 30, 1957
10 Daniel Romualdez Nacionalista Leyte-4th 4th Congress January 27, 1958 December 30, 1961
Leyte-1st 5th Congress January 22, 1962 March 9, 1962
11 Cornelio Villareal Liberal Capiz-2nd March 9, 1962 December 30, 1965
6th Congress January 17, 1966 February 2, 1967
12 José Laurel, Jr. Nacionalista Batangas-3rd February 2, 1967 December 30, 1969
7th Congress January 26, 1970 April 1, 1971
13 Cornelio Villareal (2nd time) Liberal Capiz-2nd April 1, 1971 September 23, 1972
Following the declaration of martial law, the sitting president, Ferdinand Marcos ruled by decree and possessed legislative power until the election of the Interim Batasang Pambansa in 1978. The Interim Batasang Pambansa was replaced the Regular Batasang Pambansa in 1984. Second Dictatorship
14 Querube Makalintal KBL NCR Interim Batasang Pambansa June 12, 1978 June 30, 1984
Fourth Republic
15 Nicanor Yñiguez Southern Leyte Regular Batasang Pambansa July 23, 1984 March 25, 1986
After the People Power Revolution where Marcos was overthrown, president Corazon Aquino abolished the Regular Batasang Pambansa and ruled by decree (executive order and proclamations only), possessing legislative powers until after the ratification of the 1987 Constitution, where the bicameral Congress was restored.
16 Ramon Mitra, Jr. LDP Palawan-2nd 8th Congress July 27, 1987 June 30, 1992 Fifth Republic
17 Jose de Venecia, Jr. Lakas Pangasinan-4th 9th Congress July 27, 1992 June 30, 1995
10th Congress July 24, 1995 June 30, 1998
18 Manny Villar LAMP Las Piñas 11th Congress July 27, 1998 November 13, 2000
19 Arnulfo Fuentebella NPC Camarines Sur-3rd November 13, 2000 January 24, 2001
20 Feliciano Belmonte, Jr. Lakas Quezon City-4th January 24, 2001 June 30, 2001
21 Jose de Venecia, Jr. (2nd time) Lakas Pangasinan-4th 12th Congress July 23, 2001 June 30, 2004
13th Congress July 26, 2004 June 30, 2007
14th Congress July 23, 2007 February 5, 2008
22 Prospero Nograles Lakas
Davao City-1st February 5, 2008 June 30, 2010
23 Feliciano Belmonte, Jr. (2nd time) Liberal Quezon City-4th 15th Congress July 26, 2010 June 30, 2013
16th Congress July 22, 2013 present


Living former Speakers of the House

Currently there are five living former Speakers of the House:

See also