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Taguiwalo decries delay in CA hearing as ‘form of torture’

/ 06:12 PM May 17, 2017
Judy M. Taguiwalo

DSWD Secretary Judy M. Taguiwalo. (File photo by MARIANNE BERMUDEZ / Philippine Daily Inquirer)

Social Welfare Secretary Judy Taguiwalo on Wednesday took to social media to express her “deep dismay and disappointment” over the postponement of the Commission and Appointments’ (CA) hearing on her nomination.

In a series of tweets, Taguiwalo, an activist during the martial law years, called the delay in her confirmation or non-confirmation a “form of torture.”

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“This is a form of torture that the CA and its members r subjecting me to. I’m very willing to submit to their questioning & answer all of them. It is not clear as to why the CA should continue to delay this process of confirmation or non-confirmation (if such is their wish),” Taguiwalo wrote on her Twitter account (@sec_judy).

“I’m a survivor of martial law and a torture victim. I was forced to strip naked & made to sit on a block of ice by elements of the military. I am in office to serve the Filipino people, especially the poor and those in need. It is to them that I am most accountable,” she added.

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Taguiwalo, together with Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano, was bypassed by the CA in March, but was reappointed by President Rodrigo Duterte the following month. She was supposed to face the CA for the second time Wednesday morning, but the commission postponed the hearing for next week.

Taguiwalo said she was hoping that CA members would realize that delaying her confirmation “would have a negative impact in one way or another” on the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

“The impact is on how the DSWD delivers its programs and services to the public. We are all placed in limbo—not just myself,” she said. “It is for all these reasons that I feel such deep dismay & disappointment. May epekto din ito sa mga kawani at sa aming mga beneficiaries.”

“In any case, I thank all those who called for my confirmation today. I am humbled by your expressions of support. Mabuhay kayo!” Taguiwalo added.

The CA on Wednesday approved the appointment of Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano as Foreign Affairs Secretary in just minutes, and suspended deliberations on the appointment of Health secretary-designate Paulyn Ubial. It has so far rejected the appointments of former Foreign Affairs Secretary Perfecto Yasay and former Environment Secretary Gina Lopez.

Taguiwalo’s first appearance before the CA turned controversial after Sen. Vicente “Tito” Sotto III made a remark about her status as a solo parent, which sparked online outrage.

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