Presidential spokesman Harry Roque will run for senator along with presidential adviser for political affairs Francis Tolentino and Special Assistant to the President Christopher Go.
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Cabinet to lose 6 members to poll campaign?
Christina Mendez (The Philippine Star) - October 3, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — At least six members of the Duterte Cabinet will likely quit their posts to run for local and national positions in next year’s midterm elections, presidential spokesman Harry Roque Jr. confirmed yesterday.

Roque, however, declined to name the officials who are expected to file their certificates of candidacy next week, which will trigger a major Cabinet revamp.

“From my last count, there will be around six who might run in next year’s polls,” he said.

He refused to identify the officials pending formal announcement by the President.

Sources said Roque would be among those who will leave his post.

Roque will run for senator along with presidential adviser for political affairs Francis Tolentino and Special Assistant to the President Christopher Go.

Asked if he will file his candidacy next week, Roque said he needs to consult the President first.

“I have not had a chance to meet with the President. He is not back in Manila until tomorrow. So I do not know, honestly,” Roque said. 

Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco is reportedly seeking to become governor of Bohol. 

Go, who has been going around the country, had said that his decision to run for a national post would depend on the President.

Technical Education and Skills Development Authority director general Guiling Mamondiong and Presidential Adviser on Overseas Filipino Workers Secretary Abdullah Mama-o are also reportedly running for local posts.

The President has extended the designation of Mama-o as special envoy  to Kuwait from Nov. 1 to Oct. 31 next year. 

Presidential Communications Operation Office (PCOO) Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson is also planning to run as a party-list representative.

Uson is reportedly being eyed as a nominee of ACTS-OFW party-list whose representative, Aniceto Bertiz III, might face a House probe over his recent outburst at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

Chief presidential legal counsel Salvador Panelo is reportedly being touted to replace Roque as Duterte’s spokesman.

Also in the shortlist are former Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board spokesperson Aileen Lizada, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority spokesperson and former beauty queen Celine Pialago, former Genuine Opposition spokesman Adel Tamano and PCOO Assistant Secretary-on-leave Queenie Rodulfo.

Asked if Communications Secretary Martin Andanar would act as presidential spokesman, Roque said, “It’s better if the post would be occupied by a lawyer.”

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