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Duterte confirms offering Honasan DICT portfolio

GMA News Online logo GMA News Online 11/8/2018 Marchadesch, Barbara
a man holding his hand up: Pres. Duterte meets with Sen. Honasan with other Reform the Armed Forces Movement members in Malacañang © Palace Pres. Duterte meets with Sen. Honasan with other Reform the Armed Forces Movement members in Malacañang

President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday night confirmed that he had offered the post of Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) secretary to Senator Gregorio Honasan II.

"I think he's considering the possibility," Duterte told reporters in Boracay. "I think he's toying with the idea of joining but I'm not sure if he has decided to actually join."

Duterte said he asked Honasan, whose Senate term will end in June 2019, to join him in the "quest for better Philippines and a better government."

It was Senate President Vicente Sotto III who disclosed Honasan's looming appointment to the Duterte administration. Sotto expressed hope on Wednesday that Honasan's appointment papers would be released on November 12 when the Senate session resumes.

The DICT is currently headed by Acting Secretary Eliseo Rio.

Duterte, meanwhile, said he does not see the "immediate need" to appoint a replacement for Francis Tolentino, his former political adviser who resigned last month to focus on his 2019 senatorial bid.

"Wala. Marami na eh," Duterte said. 

The President also said he is looking for a media person to be his next spokesperson, a job currently being held by Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo in a concurrent capacity.

"I am scouting preferably from the media community. Sanay eh. You would know how to respond to questions," he said. 

Duterte's former spokesperson, Harry Roque, quit his post also to run for the Senate. — BM, GMA News

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