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DOJ, DOE secretaries bypassed by CA

Jess Diaz (The Philippine Star) - December 25, 2015 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Appointments (CA) has bypassed the nominations of Secretaries Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa of the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Zenaida Monsada of the Department of Energy (DOE).

With the bypassing last weekend when Congress adjourned its session for its month-long Christmas recess, President Aquino has to issue new appointments to his two Cabinet members, CA member Isabela Rep. Rodolfo Albano III said yesterday.

“They have to be given new appointments so that their decisions and other official acts would not be questioned,” he said.

Albano said the concerned CA committees have not recommended the confirmation of the two officials’ nominations.

He pointed out that it is possible that Caguioa is awaiting the result of the vetting process of the Judicial and Bar Council for the replacement of Supreme Court Justice Martin Villarama, who will take optional retirement due to health reasons.

Albano added the CA would discuss the two Cabinet officials’ appointments when Congress reconvenes in mid-January.

The newly appointed DOJ chief is one of the candidates for the post Villarama has vacated.

Caguioa replaced former secretary Leila de Lima, who is seeking a Senate seat under the ruling Liberal Party (LP).

Monsada succeeded Carlos Jericho Petilla, who resigned in June in protest over President Aquino’s appointment of a member of the Energy Regulatory Commission.

In a recent television interview, Petilla said he felt the appointee was “compromised,” as he was identified with a big electricity company.

“The President and I had a long discussion on this. We talked about how to move forward. I told him that we should have the right people in the ERC. You can have a wrong energy secretary but not a wrong ERC commissioner,” he said.

Petilla said ERC members enjoy a fixed tenure and cannot be removed from office except for cause.

Petilla stressed that it is the people who would suffer from ERC officials’ possible conflict of interest and wrong decisions.

Like De Lima, Petilla is seeking a Senate seat under the LP ticket.

     

ACIRC ALBANO CAGUIOA CARLOS JERICHO PETILLA ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION ISABELA REP JUDICIAL AND BAR COUNCIL LIBERAL PARTY LIKE DE LIMA PETILLA PRESIDENT AQUINO
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