Key people in Rody campaign given government posts

SLICE OF LIFE - Alexis Romero - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines – Two persons who were involved in President Duterte’s campaign in the last elections have been appointed to key government posts.

Peter Tiu Laviña, Duterte’s campaign spokesman, has been named administrator of the National Irrigation Administration (NIA), according to Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol.

The President has also appointed his supporter, Billy Andal, as administrator of the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA).

Duterte signed Andal’s appointment to PCA on Nov. 8.

 Andal was chairman of the President Rodrigo Duterte Volunteer Foundation.

 Piñol said he expects better coordination between his agency and the NIA, especially in the scheduling of the release of irrigation water for rice farms.

“Laviña’s appointment as new NIA head is a welcome relief for the Department of Agriculture, especially since the agency, while officially under the Office of the President, is one of the most important agencies supporting Philippine agriculture,” Piñol said in a Facebook post.

Prior to his appointment as NIA chief, Laviña was designated deputy secretary to the Cabinet. His wife, Evelyn, is also part of the Duterte administration as an agriculture undersecretary.

Maguindanao engineer Czar Sulaik, whom Piñol has recommended to be NIA administrator, will serve as the water agency’s deputy administrator for operations.

“A hesitant candidate for the top NIA post, Sulaik agreed to settle for the position of deputy administrator for operations after I informed him of President Duterte’s choice of Laviña as NIA administrator,” Piñol said.

Sulaik was the provincial irrigation officer of North Cotabato during Piñol’s term as governor.


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