Monday, July 18, 2016

A New Age in Philippine Governance: The President’s Cabinet

Philippine governance enters a new age with the proclamation of Rodrigo Duterte as the 16th President of the Philippines. The so-called “Dirty Harry of the south”, also an established attorney, has overwhelmed other candidates by winning the 2016 presidential election leading with a margin of 6.6 million votes. The president elect has assumed office last June 30, 2016 with the elected Vice-President Leni Robredo, another attorney and human rights activists.

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With Duterte’s Proclamation, new faces have also assumed public offices to make up the President’s cabinet. The following are the newly appointed officials and their designated position:

Cabinet Secretary Leoncio B. Evasco, Jr.
Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea
Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar
Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella
National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon
Secretary of Agrarian Reform Rafael V. Mariano
Secretary of Agriculture Manny Piñol
Secretary of Budget and Management Benjamin Diokno
Secretary of Education Leonor Briones
Secretary of Energy Alfonso Cusi
Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources Gina Lopez
Secretary of Finance Carlos Dominguez III
Secretary of Foreign Affairs Perfecto R. Yasay, Jr. (acting)
Secretary of Health Paulyn Ubial
Secretary of Information and Communications Technology Rodolfo Salalima
Secretary of the Interior and Local Government Ismael Sueño
Secretary of Justice Vitaliano Aguirre II
Secretary of Labor and Employment Silvestre Bello III
Secretary of National Defense Delfin Lorenzana
Secretary of Public Works and Highways Rafael Yabut
Secretary of Science and Technology Fortunato de la Peña
Secretary of Social Welfare and Development Judy Taguiwalo
Secretary of Tourism Wanda Corazon Teo
Secretary of Trade and Industry Ramon Lopez
Secretary of Transportation Arthur Tugade
Presidential Assistant for the Visayas Michael Diño
Special Assistant to the President Christopher Go

Alan Peter Cayetano, Duterte’s vice-presidential tandem and a former senator, will assume office with the position of Secretary of Foreign Affairs and will replace Perfecto R. Yasay, Jr. not before June 30, 2017 wherein the one-year provision banning appointment losing candidates during the 2016 election will expire. Mark Villar, on the other hand, will replace Rafael Yabut as Secretary of Public Works and Highways not before July 27, 2016 once his seat in the lower house if filled via special election in Las Pinas where he has been elected representative.

Meanwhile, the following are the appointed undersecretaries and other appointed officers:

Undersecretary of Agriculture (High Value Crops) Evelyn Laviña
Undersecretary of the Interior and Local Government (Police Matters) Catalino Cuy
Undersecretary of Labor and Employment Joel Maglunsod
Undersecretary of National Defense (Civil Veterans and Retirees affairs) Eduardo del Rosario
AFP Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Ricardo Visaya
Bureau of Customs Chief Nicanor Faeldon
Bureau of Immigration Chief Jaime Morente
BIR Commissioner Cesar Dulay
LTFRB Chief Martin Delgra
LTO Chief Edgar Galvante
National Anti-Poverty Commission Chief Liza Maza
National Intelligence Coordinating Agency Chief Alex Monteagudo
NBI Chief Dante Gierran
NDRRMC Chief Ricardo Jalad
PAGCOR Chairman Andrea Domingo
PDEA Chief Isidro Lapeña
PNP Chief Chief Supt. Ronald de la Rosa
Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo
Presidential Security Group Chief Col. Rolando Bautista
Philippine Sports Commission Chairman Butch Ramirez
Solicitor General Jose Calida

While some of these newly appointed officials aren’t newbies when it comes to public service, it is still interesting to anticipate how the Duterte Administration will shape up. We may expect that his experience as a Mayor and an attorney will help him in making the Philippines a better country.

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