By Ben Rosario
1Pacman Partylist Rep. Michael Odylon Romero and outgoing Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo “Albee” Benitez topped the list of richest congressmen in the country and are the only solons who breached the P1 billion mark in their respective networths.
On orders of Majority Leader and Capiz Rep. Fredenil Castro, the House of Representatives released yesterday the alphabetical list of 2018 Statements of Assets and Liabilities of the Lower Chamber’s 291 members.
Romero and Benitez head the two most powerful political blocs in the Lower House. The partylist lawmaker is president of the Partylist Coalition Foundation Inc, next to PDP-Laban as the biggest political group in the coming 18th Congress while Benitez is lead convenor of the Visayan Bloc.
Romero remained the richest among House members, declaring a net worth of P7,858,000,000 in his 2018 SALN. His declared assets reached P7,933,000,000 for the year while liabilities were listed at only P75 million.
ON the other hand, the declared assets of Benitez reached P1,230,859,445, with liabilities reaching P214,356,343.
Youth leader and Kabataan parytlist Rep. Sara Elago is the poorest member of the chamber, with P680,000 in declared net worth.
The top ten richest Lower House members:
1. Rep. Michael Odylon Romero (1PACMaN) P7,858,000,000
2. Rep. Aflredo Abelardo Benitez (Negros Occ) 1,016,503,102
3. Rep. Imelda R. Marcos (Ilcoso Norte) 923,800,000
4. Rep Feliciano Belmonte Jr. (Quezon City) 864,752,356
5. Rep. Virgilio Lacson (Manila Teachers) 793,871,873
6. Rep. Bayani Fernando (Marikina City) 748,000,000
7. Rep. Antonio Floirendo (Davao del Norte) 714,601,761
8. Rep. Vilma Santos-Recto (Batangas) 555,324,479
9. Rep. Yedda Marie K. Romualdez (Leyte) P487,609,773
10.Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (Pampanga) 479,546,617
11.Rep. Juan Pablo Bondoc (Pampanga) 426,599,657
12. Rep. Micaela Violago 366,183,842
13.Rep. Ferjenel Biron (Iloilo) 332,408,213
14. Rep. Rosanna Vergara 327,355,737
15.. Rep. Abraham Tolentino (Tagaytay City) 302,243,552
16.. Rep. Peter Unabia (Misamis Oriental) 268,919,800
17. Rep. Manuel Luis T. Lopez (Manila) 261,131,670
18. Rep. Alex Advincula (Cavite) 260,339,727.
19, Rep. Michael John Duavit 258,716,598
20. Rep.Delphine Lee (Agri Partylist) 254,308,018.
Among the three contenders for speaker of the 18th Congress, Pampanga Rep. Aurelio Gonzales has the highest net worth at P167,077,600. Former Speaker and Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez declared his net worth at P90,317,458.58 while Marinduque Rep. Lord Alan Velasco had
Although two partylist solons made it to the top five, partylist congressmen were listed with the lowest networth. Among them are Reps. Paul Hernandez (Kabayan), P340,000; Pepito Pico (DIWA), P680,000; France Castro (ACT Teachers) P912,809; Ariel Casilao (Anakpawis) P913,350.91 ; Sabiliano Canama (Coop-Nattco) P151,634 and Carlos Isagani Zarate, (Bayan Muna), P1,710,048.