‘Violation of the law’: Tesda chief grilled over excess execs
MANILA, Philippines – The law allows the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda) to have only two deputy director generals, but it has five.
Senate Majority Leader Joel Villanueva sounded the alarm on Tuesday on the excess deputy director generals appointed in the agency.
Under the Tesda Act of 1994, the president can only designate two on the recommendation of the Tesda board.
“We have four and just recently, we appointed another deputy director general. My question is, do we need additional deputy director generals?” Villanueva asked during the Senate plenary session on the proposed national budget for 2023.
The senator also noted that Labor Secretary Bienvenido Laguesma, who sits at the helm of the Tesda board, “was not consulted when the appointment came.”
Tesda chief Danilo Cruz affirmed that the law allows for the appointment of two deputy director generals.
“But during the last administration, this was increased to four deputy director generals so when we assumed the position a few months ago, we submitted the application for four deputy director generals,” he explained.
Cruz said he was likewise not consulted nor requested to endorse the latest appointee. But he said the four deputy director generals could already handle the existing tasks of Tesda.
“Having received the appointment of the fifth one, everybody can contribute to the job of Tesda, and right now, we’re just thinking of designating him as deputy director general for a special concern,” he noted.
But Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri further grilled the Tesda chief over the excessive appointment of deputy director generals.
“You came up with two new items without amending the law. Therefore, you are in violation of the law,” he said.
In defense, Cruz said: “This is happening to a lot of government institutions.”
“The reasoning that it is being done by others should not be the right and legal reason,” Zubiri said. “Just because it is being violated by other agencies, it should also be violated by Tesda. What we should do is clamp down on those other agencies as well.”