MALACANANG said on Wednesday that it regretted the rejection of the ad interim appointment of Rafael Mariano as secretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR).
“We regret the news of Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Secretary Rafael “Paeng” Mariano’s rejection by the Commission on Appointments,” Palace spokesman Ernesto Abella said in a statement.
Abella said the people would always be grateful to Mariano “for his dedicated and passionate service to the nation.”
“Improving the quality of life of our farmers is the commitment of the Duterte administration, and Sec. Mariano has been pivotal in promoting farmers’ rights and welfare and ensuring their security of land tenure,” he said.
On Wednesday, majority of the members of the CA rejected the confirmation of Mariano, the remaining Leftist leader in the Cabinet of President Rodrigo Duterte.
Mariano was the second left-leaning secretary ousted from Duterte’s Cabinet after former Social Welfare Secretary Judy Taguiwalo also failed to get the CA’s nod in August.
Aside from Mariano and Taguiwalo, the CA also voted against the confirmations of Duterte’s appointees, Perfecto Yasay Jr. for foreign affairs, and Regina “Gina” Lopez for the environment portfolio.
CATHERINE S. VALENTE