SEN. Gregorio Honasan 2nd will be at the helm of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) as secretary in July this year, according to Senate President Vicente Sotto 3rd
Sotto made the announcement in response to media queries on Honasan’s status as a result of the recent reappointment of Eliseo Rio as DICT acting secretary.
President Rodrigo Duterte signed Rio’s appointment as DICT acting head on March 25.
Sotto explained that Honasan was not able to immediately report to his new assignment as DICT head as he still needs to face the Commission on Appointments (CA).
The President signed the appointment papers of Honasan last November 20 or a month before Congress adjourned for the Christmas break last year.
Honasan, who heads the Senate defense and security committee under the current 17th Congress, will still face the CA over his new Cabinet appointment.
“You are hereby nominated Secretary, Department of Information and Communications Technology,” the paper addressed to Honasan read.
“By virtue hereof, and upon consent of the Commission on Appointments, you may qualify and enter upon the performance of duties of the office, furnishing this Office and the Civil Service Commission with copies of your oath of office,” it said.
Malacañang spokesman Salvador Panelo earlier said the President had full trust and confidence in Honasan, citing his integrity and competence to lead the DICT.
He added that Honasan would still have to face the CA inquiry and address concerns that may be raised about his appointment.
“When the President nominates, it’s for the Commission on Appointments to approve the nomination,” Panelo said. “There will be vetting there… and you will have to respond to questions on his competence,” he added.
Honasan could not be reached for comment on Saturday.
President Duterte signed the appointment papers of Rio on Tuesday, naming him as acting DICT secretary.
Rio was named DICT officer-in-charge in October 2017 after Secretary Rodolfo Salalima was asked by Duterte to resign in September for allegedly favoring certain internet company to enter the Philippine market.