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Duterte says not all Mocha Girls to be appointed to gov't

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte congratulates newly appointed Movie and Television Review and Classification Board member Margaux “Mocha” Uson during the oath-taking ceremony of government officials at the Rizal Hall in Malacañan Palace on Jan. 9, 2017. Robinson Niñal/Presidential Photo

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte clarified his earlier statement on the possibility of appointing members of an all-female dance group to government posts, saying not all of them may get the jobs.

The performers Mae Del Cerna, Franz Fainsan, Georgina Knight, Seika Hashizume, Jhane Santigauel, Pepper Gutierrez and popular blogger and sex advise columnist Mocha Uson, who leads the group, have been staunch supporters of the president since his campaign last year.

“Not all. But kung gusto nila magtrabaho, trabaho ka,” Duterte told reporters in Hong Kong when asked to confirm whether he is appointing the dancers.

The president, who earlier said he does not find anything wrong with appointing dancers to a government post, said that if ever he will assign the Mocha Girls, he will give them a job "appropriate to their qualification."

After the controversial appointment of Uson to a ranking post at the Presidential Communications Operations Office, Duterte said last Friday that he may offer a position to members of the rest of her team.

“Kung gusto nila mag-trabaho okay lang,” Duterte said when he met the Mocha girls members.  "I-distribute ko na lang kayo sa (MTRCB, Movie and Television Review and Classification Board."

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Uson replied that she may hire the girls to her office. “Sa opisina ko na lang, sir,” she said, addressing the president.

But Duterte said he will not allow all the group members to stay in one office.

"Hindi kayo puwede mag-isang opisina masyadong maingay," he said.

In a separate Facebook post, Uson said Duterte’s offer was made in jest.

“Yes po totoo po magkakaroon na ng DEPARTMENT OF ENTERTAINMENT or DOEn,” Uson wrote.

“’Pag 'yan naniwala pa kayo ha? Pa check-up na po kayo. NAGBIBIRUAN LANG KANINA SINERYOSO NAMAN NG IBA HEHEHEHEHE,” she added.

Prior to Uson’s appointment to the PCOO, she was appointed as a board member of Movie and Television Review and Classification Board.

Duterte admitted that it was his idea to appoint Mocha and that he has “debt of gratitude” to her. He told Uson to stop minding bashers.

Uson, for her part, thanked the president for not underestimating her.

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