Search for heads of 5 agencies continues


Three constitutional bodies as well as the Department of Health (DOH) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) have no heads yet.

Malacañang has kept mum on when President Benigno Aquino 3rd will name the replacements for Grace Pulido-Tan, former chairperson of the Commission on Audit (COA), Sixto Brillantes Jr. of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and Francisco Duque 3rd of the Civil Service Commission (CSC), who retired on February 1.

Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda said the President is “still looking for the right people” to replace the three.

Being constitutional bodies, the COA, Comelec and CSC can still function even without appointed chairpersons, Lacierda added.

“These are very sensitive positions. As you know, we’re looking at the heads of the independent constitutional commissions. So we’re looking at the right people for the job, so we’ll ask for some patience on the part of the public,” he told reporters.

“But, nonetheless and having said that, the work of these independent commissions is not stopped by reason of the non-appointment of their chairmen,” Lacierda said.

Last month, Aquino said he will appoint acting Health Secretary Janette Garin to a permanent capacity, replacing resigned Secretary Enrique Ona. He said Garin’s appointment would be announced after the visit of Pope Francis.

A week after the Pope left Manila last month, however, the Mamasapano incident happened.

According to Lacierda, Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas 2nd will be meeting with the President on Wednesday and they may discuss Purisima’s replacement.


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