DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/16 May) — City Mayor and presumptive president Rodrigo R. Duterte is planning to give some cabinet posts to the Communist Party of the Philippines.
Duterte revealed such plan in a press briefing at the Matina Enclaves Monday where he mentioned some names who will compose his government, which included close friends from his days as a student.
He said he would offer the Department of Agrarian Reform, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Labor, and Department of Social Welfare and Development to the Left being the most “vigilant” group when it comes to pressing national issues.
“If they (CPP) decide to join my government, open yong four posts,” he said.
“Open yong DAR, DENR, Labor, kasi iyan ang pinaka-oppressed. They are the most vigilant group in the Philippines about labor…Marami pang iba but these are the only departments I can concede to them — four,” he said.
Duterte said he was thinking about appointing his close friend Carlos Dominguez, former cabinet secretary and businessman, as finance secretary, and Arthur Tugade as transportation and communication secretary.
Dominguez presented the incoming president’s eight-economic agenda at the Marco Polo Hotel here last week.
Duterte was also planning to appoint former secretary Jesus Dureza as presidential adviser on the peace process, Silvestre Bello III as chief peace negotiator with the National Democratic Front, Salvador Medialdea as executive secretary, Peter Laurel as education secretary, Gilbert Teodoro as defense secretary (the same post he held under the Arroyo administration), and his counsel Salvador Panelo as presidential spokesperson.
He said he wanted his running mate Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano to head either the Department of Foreign Affairs or Department of Justice, but the latter is banned for a year from accepting executive posts.
He added that he asked Perfecto Yasay, his roommate when he was taking up law at the San Beda College, to be the acting foreign affairs secretary even just for one year until Cayetano could assume a cabinet post.
“He (Cayetano) might opt to be just a member of the Senate, to which I respect his choice,” he said.
He said he requested Yasay, a professor of law at a university in Hawaii, to take a sabbatical leave and help him in the government.
“He just came to greet me. I told him if you can take extra one year, mag-furlough muna. I will assign him to DFA, in acting capacity,” he said.
Cayetano, in an interview at the Marco Polo Hotel last week, said he will help Duterte in his legislative agenda and will only consider his offer at the end of the one-year ban.
Duterte vowed to offer officials who would be appointed to top government posts allowances that will match their compensation in the private sector.
Duterte will choose the next chief of the Philippine National Police from three from among three prospects who had served as police director of Davao City — Chief Supt. Ramon Apolinario, Chief Supt. Ronald Dela Rosa, and Senior Supt. Rene Espera. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)