Aquino team a mixture of old and new
By Thea Alberto, Yahoo! Southeast Asia
President-elect Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III’s official team is a mixture of “old and new faces.” It is composed of people from his late mother’s Cabinet and those behind his presidential campaign.
“You will see old and new faces. You will see the young…and also young. But bottom line is these are the people who I believe have committed to the philosophy that the problems in this country are solvable,” Aquino told a press conference Tuesday, as he announced the names of his official Cabinet members.
Aquino will be the interim Secretary for Interior and Local Government while he has yet to determine his appointee for the much-coveted post.
“Kung di tayo nakakahanap ng alter-ego natin na buong buo ang pagtitiwala, e sino ang pagtitiwalaan mo kundi ako muna,” Aquino explained when asked why he had no appointee to the DILG.
What follows is a list of Aquino’s Cabinet members and his actual quotes about them:
Executive Secretary: Lawyer Paquito M. Ochoa Jr.
“Jojo has been helping me out. I’m not a lawyer, he has helped me out in understanding the law and the intricacies of the law ever since I started in public office. Both our parents were allies in the LP, have been consistent allies all throughout our lives,” Aquino said of Ochoa.
Foreign Affairs: Alberto Romulo
“[He] graciously consented to retaining his position. And we are very fortunate to have him as a senior member of the Cabinet,” said Aquino.
Finance: Former Secretary and Secretary-designate Cesar Purisima.
“I think his credentials speak for himself. But most of these people their credentials speak for themselves,” Aquino said.
Justice: Leila M. de Lima.
“I am very sure you are familiar with the quality of her work. As you know, the judicial is a very important portion of our platform and again we are very fortunate to get her to consent to carrying the burden primarily for judicial reform in our country,” he said.
Defense: Ret. Lt. Gen. Voltaire Gazmin
“Perhaps one of the key people for giving me the opportunity to be present before you because he took good care of us during the numerous coup attempts during my mom’s incumbency, as well as his continuous dedication to the Filipino people in this very abnormal situation we find our country in,” said Aquino.
Education: Christian brother, Fr. Armin Luistro of De La Salle system
“Coming from the AdMU I think it already speaks highly of the qualifications of Bro. Armin that I begged him to join the Cabinet,” said Aquino.
Budget and Management: Butch Abad
“The budget is the enabler of all of our policy decisions. We believe he is the best person at the present time to assist us in judiciously spending the people’s funds to help him and help us,” said Aquino.
NEDA: Cayetano W. Paderanga Jr.
“We will have a NEDA that will give us sound advice due to economic considerations and not political considerations,” he said.
Department of Agriculture: Quezon Rep. Proceso V. Alcala
“He has been heavily involved in environmental concerns within and without Quezon, organic farming and so many aspects of agriculture have been the advocacies of Rep. and Sec-designate Alcala,” he said.
DENR: Usec. Ramon Paje
DOTC: Jose de Jesus.
“As you know he served under my mother’s Cabinet both as Secretary to the Cabinet and one of the most if not the most hardworking members of my mother’s Cabinet,” he said.
Labor and Employment: Usec. Rosalinda Baldoz
“She used to head the POEA among other agencies. Her concentration also is with the workings of NLRC, which we believe is an adjunct of her agency under DOLE in need of very strong reforms. We find in her the capability to make this agency truly responsive to the needs of the working man,” said Aquino.
Health: Director of NKTI, Enrique T. Ona.
“In our interview we saw in him the potential to become a complete alter-ego, especially given the fact that health agenda is No. 3 on our platform. And he has been given instructions specifically with regard to expediting universal coverage of PhilHealth, one of our campaign promises,” said Aquino.
Tourism: Alberto Lim
“He has been involved in various business endeavors to include the setting up of El Nido and Amanpulo.”
DTI: Gregory L. Domingo
“Served in that capacity as Usec for (Board) of Investments. Presently executive director SM Investments Corp., international trade law and business law lecturer, MBA program, DLSU.”
DSWD: Corazon Juliano-Soliman, whom Aquino said “needs no introduction.”
DOST: Dr. Mario G. Montejo
“A man of numerous titles, meaning so many degrees. He is a person I have known for the past few years, actually few decades. Among the inventions his companies set up, they were a group of academicians who decided they wanted to make their studies more practical,” said Aquino.
Energy: Jose Rene Almendras
“I knew him since college days. He is a very good friend of mine presently with Manila Water. Obviously we want somebody who is not part of the industry inasmuch as there will be a lot of dealings with the industry. We do not want to fall into a trap of regulatory capture,” said Aquino.
DPWH: Rogelio Singson
“Very extensive CV. I don’t think he is a stranger to most of us. It is coincidental he is presently with Maynilad,” said Aquino.
DAR: Virgilio R. delos Reyes
“I met him first at the interview I was very impressed with the knowledge he possessed with regards to the problems pertaining to the [sector],” said Aquino.
Peace process: Teresita Deles
Presidential Management Staff: Julia Abad
“I have been served faithfully ever since I became senator about 3 years today by the Hon. Julia Abad . She has undergone numerous schoolings. But more than that she has my absolute trust having run my office,” said Aquino.
Presidential Spokesman: Edwin Lacierda
Pres Legal Counsel: Eduardo de Mesa, one of the first lawyers when Aquino took upon public service in 1998.
CHED: Dr. Patricia Licuanan
“She will, as her primary mission, rectify the current situation where the government agency tasked to oversee higher educational institutions seems to be sleeping on the job,” said Aquino.
BIR: Atty. Kim Jacinto Henares
“Kim has been functioning in effect as secretary to the Cabinet in all the policy briefings that I have been subjected to. She has been very effective in coming out with answers to a lot of the questions in my rushed preparations for this presidential campaign,” he said.
Chief of Staff, AFP: Maj. Gen. Ric David
PNP Chief: Jesus Verzosa
Reposted From Thea Alberto Of Yahoo! News Southeast Asia