Palace unfazed by resignations
Malacañang is unfazed by the resignation of undersecretaries of the Department of Transportation and Communications just days after Transportation Secretary Jose de Jesus tendered his own.
“It’s natural that they’re clearing the desk for the next DoTC secretary. Perhaps they won’t immediately be leaving. Perhaps they would give the new secretary a chance to be oriented on what’s done there,” President Benigno Aquino III’s spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said yesterday in a radio interview.
“It’s expected and it’s normal,” he said.
In another interview over ANC, Lacierda said Manuel “Mar” Roxas would not be tapped to replace De Jesus, as had been reported in at least one other newspaper.
He said Roxas’ official designation remained in the works, and expressed doubt that the title “presidential chief of staff” would stick to Mr. Aquino’s defeated running mate in the May 2010 election.
Lacierda said Roxas and Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa met on Wednesday night to discuss what the former senator’s role would be in the administration.
“My understanding is that he will be working in the Palace. But as to the designation of ‘chief of staff,’ I think that is also being worked out. I’m not sure if he will be properly called ‘chief of staff,’” Lacierda said. “My understanding is something along the lines of a presidential adviser.”
Lacierda indicated that the meeting between Ochoa and Roxas served to firm up the idea that the latter would be joining the administration.
“They met, and it appears that their discussion went well about the role that Senator Mar Roxas would be playing here in Malacañang,” Lacierda said in yet another radio interview.
“So he will be working here in the Palace, not at the DoTC,” Lacierda added.
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