ON her last day of office, former Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Judy Taguiwalo expressed her sadness over the lack of President Rodrigo Duterte’s support for her 14-month term.
The Commission on Appointment (CA) denied Taguiwalo’s appointment on August 16 with no valid explanation.
At least 13 lawmakers in the commission voted to reject Taguiwalo’s nomination.
“Mr. President, I kept faith with you. I am just saddened because I don’t think you kept faith with me until the end,” Taguiwalo said in a final speech she delivered at the Social Welfare’s central office on Tuesday.
“But still, thank you for allowing me to serve the Filipino people as a member of your Cabinet, for showing the Filipino people ang kaliwa ho, kayang maglingkod ng tapat, ng may malasakit, na walang katiwalian at may pagmamahal sa bayan [that a member of the Left can serve honestly with love for the country],” she added.
Taguiwalo was a former political prisoner identified with leftist militants who suffered under martial law that was declared by then-President Marcos in 1972.
Duterte said in a Palace news conference on Monday night “that is the job of Congress as part of the checks and balances in this government. We can’t do anything if [the]appointment is rejected.”
On Tuesday, the department’s employees, all clad in black, held a “send-off” for the former secretary to express their gratitude for Taguiwalo’s service.
Since she took office last May 2016, Taguiwalo improved the distribution of relief goods and financial assistance to calamity victims, as well as the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), the conditional cash transfer program initiated by the Aquino administration that has benefited 4.4 million poor Filipino families.
Taguiwalo is the third Cabinet official appointed by President Duterte to be rejected by the Commission on Appointments.
The previous two were Perfecto Yasay Jr. as Foreign Affairs secretary and Gina Lopez as Environment secretary.