Trixie Cruz-Angeles, Vic Rodriguez out from Malacañang

Xave Gregorio - Philstar.com
Trixie Cruz-Angeles, Vic Rodriguez out from Malacañang
File photos show Press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles and former Executive Secretary Vic Rodriguez.

MANILA, Philippines (2nd update, 3:42 p.m.) — Trixie Cruz-Angeles and Vic Rodriguez are no longer Malacañang officials, Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin said Tuesday in what appeared to be a series of heads rolling in the administration of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Angeles had confirmed with Philstar.com that she resigned as press secretary due to health reasons, making her the second top Malacañang official to leave their post in just two weeks since Rodriguez, who formerly occupied Bersamin's position, announced that he was stepping down.

Rodriguez' resignation came with a caveat: That he was staying on as Marcos' chief of staff. Bersamin revealed to reporters that this was not the case and that Rodriguez is no longer part of the Cabinet.

Unlike Rodriguez, Angeles did not say that she is moving on to a different position, but told reporters in a separate statement that she tendered her resignation Tuesday morning, which will be effective at the end of business hours.

Her resignation came on the heels of rumors that she will soon be replaced by Mike Toledo, former President Joseph Estrada's press secretary.

Further fueling speculation that Angeles was on her way out of Malacañang was her absence from the list of Cabinet secretaries who were reappointed by Marcos and took their oath earlier Tuesday after being bypassed by the Commission on Appointments.

As Angeles vacated the Office of the Press Secretary, Malacañang said no one has been appointed to replace her.

Office of the Press Secretary

During Angeles’ short stint in her post lasting only 96 days, her office was reorganized and renamed to the Office of the Press Secretary as it absorbed the functions of the scrapped Presidential Communications Operations Office.

Angeles’ tenure as press secretary has mostly been uneventful as she vowed to be “more sedate” and “more objective” in her duties. However, she recently apologized for incorrectly claiming that Marcos was the only leader US President Joe Biden spoke to at the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York.

Prior to becoming press secretary, Angeles served in the now defunct PCOO as social media strategist at the PCOO from July 2017 to 2018 during the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.

Angeles was formerly a critic of the Marcos family and even lamented in old and some deleted tweets about the lack of legal repercussions for them after the 1986 People Power Revolution. She said she has changed her mind about the family of the president.

INTERAKSYON: Why old tweets of next press secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles are reappearing

In 2016, the Supreme Court slapped Cruz-Angeles with a three-year suspension as it found that she and two other lawyers violated the canons in the Code of Professional Responsibility.

Cruz-Angeles and two other lawyers were sued by their client after the latter paid P350,000 but they failed to produce a petition for annulment.

The STAR reported then that Angeles, who served as lawyer of Magdalo soldiers and expelled Iglesia Ni Cristo minister Lowell Menorca, admitted that their law firm received the payment but denied that she was remiss in her duties. — with a report from Kristine Joy Patag

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