Duterte silent on Marcos’ Cabinet picks, says Palace
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has been mum about presumptive president Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr’s choices for his Cabinet., Malacañang said Tuesday.
“Wala naman kaming napaguusapan during our Talk to the People addresses or mini Cabinet meetings. Walang binabanggit ang ating Pangulo sa mga naglalabasan sa pahayagan about the choices of the presumptive president,” acting presidential spokesperson Secretary Martin Andanar said in a Palace briefing.
(We have not talked about that during our Talk to the People addresses or mini Cabinet meetings. The President is silent about the news about the choices of the presumptive president.)
Andanar was asked if the President has given any feedback or comment about the Cabinet members so far picked by Marcos.
So far, Marcos has tapped Duterte’s daughter and presumptive vice president, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Caprio, as his education secretary.
He has also chosen his chief-of-staff and spokesperson, Atty. Vic Rodriguez, to be his executive secretary.
The presumptive president likewise picked former Metropolitan Manila Development Authority chair Benhur Abalos to lead the Department of the Interior and Local Government, Cavite 7th District Rep. Boying Remulla to be his Department of Justice secretary, Bienvenido Laguesma to head the Department of Labor, and Susan “Toots” Ople to be the chief of the newly-created Department of Migrant Workers.
Marcos also chose Arsenio Balisacan, the socioeconomic planning secretary of former President Benigno S. Aquino III, to take the helm of the National Economic and Development Authority again.
Transition ‘marching orders’
For a smooth transition to the next administration, Andanar said one of Duterte’s “marching orders” is “for us to transition professionally.”
Andanar noted that Duterte and Marcos’ transition teams have yet to meet since both sides are awaiting the official proclamation.
Congress is currently canvassing votes for president and vice president in the May 9 elections, eyeing to proclaim the country’s new top two leaders by Wednesday night at the earliest.
“I can only speak on behalf of the PCOO (Presidential Communications Operations Office) at ang ating Office of the Presidential Spokesperson, ito naman ay napaghanadaan natin [we have already prepared for this’. December pa lang ay mayroon na tayong proseso na ginawa to professionalize the transition sa departamento natin [Since December, we have already started the process to professionalize the transition in our department],” Andanar disclosed.
“We are ready, we are just waiting essentially for the pronouncement of Atty. Vic Rodriguez,” he added.
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