No special Cabinet meeting called, only joint cluster meeting — Nograles
MANILA, Philippines — It is not a Cabinet meeting if President Rodrigo Duterte would not be there, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles made the clarification Sunday amid reports Duterte calling a Cabinet meeting to discuss the sinking of a Filipino boat after a “collision” with a Chinese vessel in the West Philippine Sea.
Nograles said the meeting was only a joint cluster meeting between the security, justice, and peace cluster under Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and economic development cluster under Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III.
“Technically hindi pwedeng tawaging Cabinet meeting kasi kung hindi si Pangulo ang nandun, hindi siya [Cabinet meeting]. Siguro ang confusion lang, if ever, is ‘yung loose na paggamit ng word na Cabinet meeting. But if it involves several Cabinet secretaries yung kasama sa meeting, siguro loosely natatawag siyang Cabinet meeting,” Nograles said in an interview over radio station DZBB.
“But in the strictest sense, kung protocol ang pag-uusapan, it’s a Cabinet meeting if the President attends,” Nograles added.
Nograles said Duterte would not be able to attend the meeting due to prior commitments.
The Cabinet secretary said clearer information on the reported collision in the West Philippine Sea would be available following the joint cluster meeting.
“Hindi maiiwasan na isa ito sa mga pag-uusapan. Kasama ang Department of Foreign Affairs [sa mga a-attend],” Nograles said.
“Ang mangyayari, pagkatapos ng meeting ay mas malilinawagan na kami at iba’t ibang Cabinet secretaries, we’ll get a clearer picture on what happened and what our next move will be,” he added.
Lorenzana said Sunday that Duterte called for a special Cabinet meeting to discuss the reported collision in the West Philippines.
Merely an hour after the said meeting was called, however, Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea said that it had been cancelled. (Editor: Julie Espinosa)