Gov’t execs, lawmakers welcome appointment of Teodoro, Herbosa
MANILA, Philippines — Government officials and lawmakers on Tuesday welcomed President Marcos’ choices for his latest Cabinet members with Senate Minority Leader Aquilino Pimentel III pointing out that both Gilbert Teodoro and Teodoro Herbosa had previously worked in the agencies they were designated to lead.
Teodoro, a lawyer, returned to his former post as head of the Department of National Defense (DND), which he held during the Arroyo administration.
On the other hand, Herbosa, a doctor-educator, was tapped as secretary of the Department of Health (DOH), where he previously served as undersecretary.
“Both have prior experience in the field already. Hence, they can hit the ground running,” Pimentel told reporters.
Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri said Teodoro, a former lawmaker, was “a tried and tested public servant” who would be able to lead the defense department “most capably.”
Former National Security Adviser (NSA) Clarita Carlos also welcomed Teodoro’s appointment, describing him as “academically grounded.”
She said she expected him to advise the President to restructure the military, as “the new challenges now require a bigger Navy and Marine Corps, and not a huge Army.”
She added that Teodoro should push for implementing rules and regulations on the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (Edca) between Manila and Washington, especially with the designation of four new Edca sites in Luzon.
Defense Senior Undersecretary Carlito Galvez Jr., who served as the DND caretaker for the past five months, assured Teodoro of his “unequivocal support as we all work together in the pursuit of our vision of a peaceful, stable, and prosperous Philippines.”
The Armed Forces of the Philippines also vowed support for Teodoro with its spokesperson, Col. Medel Aguilar, saying that they believed his “decisive leadership, professional competence, and wealth of experience, highlighted by his previous assignment as the defense chief from 2007 to 2009, would help build upon our gains in the defense and security of the country.”