DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/01 June) — President-elect Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday night said selecting members of his Cabinet was “not a simple job” but
assured the Filipino people that he chose “men of integrity and honesty.”
Seventeen more names were added to the 15 he earlier named in a series of press conferences since May 16.
“I am just reminded of the man holding a lamp during daytime when the sun was bright and he was going around with the lamp and somebody asked him, ‘why are you bringing the lamp in the daytime when you can see everything and he said ‘because I am looking for an honest man’,” he told a press conference Tuesday at the “Malacañang of the South” within the compound of Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) 11 in Panacan.
President-elect Rodrigo Duterte presides over a meeting with members of his incoming Cabinet on Tuesday, May 31, 2016, at the “Malacanang of the South” in Davao City, a day after his proclamation as winner in the Presidential polls. To his right are incoming Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea and Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco, Jr. Photo courtesy of KING RODRIGUEZ
He admitted that he had hard a hard time scouting for prospective members to join his Cabinet and the days he shunned the public eye were spent studying his bets and the recommendations to him.
“I can assure you, they’re all men of integrity and honesty. Wala akong nakita talagang bahad ni isa sa kanila, otherwise automatic ayaw ko na para wala akong problema” (I did not see any taint in each of them, otherwise automatic, I will not appoint them so I won’t have a problem), he said.
To his appointees, Duterte said he will not interfere in their work for as long as they carry out their duties well and there are no complaints about their services from their clients.
“I do not intend to interfere in their work… Hindi ako makikialam. Ang gusto ko lang walang reklamo yung tao (I will not interfere. What I want is that people will not be complaining) but I have a few suggestions. I do not want people queuing,” he said.
Incoming Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo read the list of Duterte’s new appointees as they were presented during Tuesday’s press conference.
President-elect Rodrigo Duterte presents members of his Cabinet during a press conference at “Malacanang of the South” inside the Department of Public Works and Highways compound in Panacan, Davao City on Tuesday night, May 31, 2016. MindaNews photo by TOTO LOZANO
Duterte named former South Cotabato Governor and PDP-Laban chair Ismael “Mike” Sueño to the Interior and Local Government, Fortunato dela Peña to Science and Technology, Judy Taguiwalo to Social Welfare and Development, Rafael Mariano to Agrarian Reform, Miguel Delfin Lorenzana to National Defense, Martin Delgra to Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, Catalino Cuy as undersecretary of Interior and Local Government, Isidro Lapeña to Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, Alex Monteagudo to National Intelligence Coordinating Agency, Jaime Morente to Bureau of Immigration and Deportation, Nicanor Faeldon to Bureau of Customs, Cesar Dulay to Bureau of Internal Revenue, Edgar Galvante to Land Transportation Office, Ricardo Jalad to National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, Dante Gierran to National Bureau of Investigation, Catalino Cuy as undersecretary of Interior and Local Government for Police Matters and Michael Diño as presidential assistant for the Visayas.
Duterte had earlier named his national campaign manager and former Davao City chief of staff Leoncio Evasco, outgoing mayor of Maribojoc town in Bohol, as Secretary to the Cabinet, Atty. Silvestre Bello to Labor and Employment, Ernesto Pernia as Director-General of the National Economic and Development Authority, Alfonso Cusi to Energy, Jose Calida as Solicitor General, Atty. Salvador Panelo as Presidential Spokesperson and Press secretary, Atty. Salvador Medialdea as Executive secretary, former North Cotabato governor Manny Piñol to Agriculture, Leonor Briones to Education, Carlos Dominguez to Department of Finance, Atty. Perfecto Yasay to Foreign of Affairs, Atty. Vitaliano Aguirre to Justice, Mark Villar to Public Works and Highways, Arthur Tugade to Transportation and Communication and Ronald Dela Rosa as chief of Philippine National Police.
Duterte has yet to name his secretaries of the Departments of Health, Environment and Natural Resources, Tourism, and Trade and Industry.
When asked if he would give Vice President-elect Leni Robredo a cebinet post, he replied he is “non-committal” because he does not want to hurt Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr., who came second to Robredo in the vice-presidential race.
“Si Leni, she should understand that she belongs to the opposite side. There is no compelling reason for her to be a member of the Cabinet,” he said.
But he added “we are still studying the script of the movie.”
Duterte’s running mate, Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, had repeatedly said Duterte would Robredo would a member of Duterte’s Cabinet.
He told reporters in Davao City on Saturday that the post Duterte would offer Robredo is “tailored to what we heard from her during the campaign that she would like to handle.”
In his campaign sortie in San Miguel, Bulacan in mid-April, Duterte, then already the Presidential race frontrunner, said in response to a query from the media if he would appoint his rivals to a Cabinet position, that he would name Senator Grace Poe to head the Social Welfare or Tourism department and Robredo will be his “assistant President.”
Section 3, Article VII of the 1987 Constitution states that the Vice-President “may be appointed as a Member of the Cabinet. Such appointment requires no confirmation.” (Antonio L. Colina IV /MindaNews)