Malacañang is respecting the opposing views of head of agencies on the policies of President Rodrigo Duterte, a day after lawmakers called for the resignation of Commission on Human Rights (CHR) Chair Chito Gascon.
Senator Vicente Sotto III on Wednesday said it was better for people in government to get out of the administration if they do not agree with the policies of President Rodrigo Duterte.
Gascon, an appointee of former President Benigno Aquino III, is a fierce critic of Duterte’s brutal war on drugs and alleged human-rights violations reportedly being committed by law enforcers.
Asked to comment on the issue, Communications Assistant Secretary Kris Ablan said Malacañang respects the opinions and beliefs of leaders from different sectors.
“As far as Malacañang is concerned, we respect the different opinions, beliefs of the different heads of agencies. And the statements that you heard comes from the other branch, the legislative branch,” Ablan said in a Palace briefing on Thursday.
“They are appointed by both the President and the previous president and the Palace respects the opinions of the different heads of agencies including constitutional commissions,” he added.
He admitted that Malacañang felt “a little slighted” if head of agencies expressed views contrary to the government but said it was normal.
“You know, of course, anyone in the same position would feel a little slighted if the opinions differ. That’s very natural for every human being,” he said.
Despite their opposing views with the administration, Ablan said Malacañang respects the fixed term of head of agencies.
“The official policy is they’re appointed for a fixed term, we respect the fixed term. They have their own opinions, this is a free country, and so we respect the opinions of the different heads of agencies,” he said.
The House of Representatives voted on Tuesday to give a P1,000 budget to CHR for 2018. /jpv
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