REP. Mel Senen Sarmiento, the secretary general of the Liberal Party (LP), will step down as a member of the House of Representatives on Thursday.
Sarmiento said he is resigning to accept his appointment as Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government. He will replace Interior Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas 2nd, the standard bearer of the ruling party.
Sarmiento will also take a leave of absence as LP’s secretary seneral.
“It would look bad if I would still hold the position of being the LP Secretary General. I would want to be fair to everybody. I have also been a local official myself, so I don’t want to raise suspicion that I am harassing politicians because we are not party-mates,” he told reporters.
Rep. Edgar Erice of Caloocan City said that Roxas will leave his DILG post for good on Friday.
Sarmiento expressed confidence that his party-mate, Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr., will take care of his district.
“The Speaker will ensure that my constituents won’t be deprived of government services. I need not worry since a caretaker [of my district]could be assigned, if not the Speaker himself. My constituents will continuously enjoy what the national government has to offer,” he said.