Meeting late into the evening after the annual State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Rodrigo Duterte, the House of Representatives elects former President and Pampanga Representatives Gloria Macapagal Arroyo its new speaker, with 184 votes and 12 abstentions. She was the lone nominee in a meeting the took place after an earlier session to elect her was declared invalid due to the absence of the House Secretariat and mace.
The change, seen by some as a response to alleged complaints about the leadership of former House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez is hoped to consolidate legislative support for the various legislative proposals discussed in the earlier SONA by the President.
In taking her oath, she was joined by representatives of various parties including the liberal Party. Arroyo becomes the first former President and first woman to hold the position of House Speaker.