Wednesday, August 29, 2012


I understand that PNoy will soon appoint a permanent replacement for the late Jesse Robredo as Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Governments (DILG). Currently, Executive Secretary Ochoa is the officer-in-charge.

Let me reiterate what I had expressed in my two previous columns:


Mar Roxas must be elected as Vice President to work with Noynoy. To institute the educational, environmental, economic, electoral, military/police, judicial, civil service, social and constitutional reforms needed, it would take more than six years; in fact, a whole generation. Mar is needed as a Co-Manager to tackle them. He prepared and invested to be President. He sacrificed and gave way to Noynoy. He deserves to be Vice-President. “

2. From “PNoy’s Planning, Programming, and Preparation = PPPP = PPPP”, August 22, 2012

“This is where PNoy’s Planning, Programming, and Preparation (PPPP) come into play. If PNoy wants Roxas to be the next President, he might decide to permanently put the latter at DILG. For the next few months, Roxas would have direct exposure, administration, and supervision over all the local officials up to the Barangay level.

Working with the Liberal Party apparatus and Budget Secretary Abad, Roxas would be able to know and recruit local candidates who share the same values as the Aquino-Roxas –New LP tandem in the coming elections and in the next Presidential elections.


The efficient and effective use of Personnel, People Power and the Party in Preparing and Programming PNoy’s Plans should be geared towards the Path to a Progressive and Prosperous Philippines. This would take more than one term. There is a need for continuity. Otherwise, we go back to the same vicious and unacceptable cycle.”

I have no doubt that PNoy, being an honorable man, was and continues to be, committed to Mar Roxas as his successor. The issue is how to sell the latter to the people who follow him and to those who share his programs and values in the same manner that Robredo did, as well as to the Filipino voters who continue to say “AYE” to his administration.

I believe that PNoy could accomplish that goal if he places “Mr. Palengke” at DILG. There, he would be perceived as grounded, humbled, caring, and most importantly, Pang-Masang Pangulo (People’s President).

History has shown that it would take an efficient and effective ORGANIZATION (Personnel, Party, People Power volunteers); RESOURCES (Pesos); and IMAGE PROJECTION (Propaganda, Public Relations) to win the Presidency. Leading DILG would help build these.

As I mentioned above, if PNoy wants continuity and stability, he should put Roxas at the helm of DILG immediately. The latter has PNoy and Robredo as role models and standards. He would have about three years to meet, show, or if necessary be trained and molded to fulfill the required role. Macho he must be.

I read that Roxas has his own recommendation for the DILG job. The rationale of appointing the Secretary-General of the Liberal Party is acceptable but would be a cop-out. It is equivalent to having the influence and/or power without the responsibilities.

Since Robredo is a “tough act to follow”, it would be cowardice to avoid it. Roxas must accept the challenge. He must ask, in fact, demand that PNoy appoint him as DILG Chief. He must assert his leadership at the LP and get the party to endorse him precisely for the party’s and the country’s future.

Like PNoy, Roxas has had legislative experience as Congressman and Senator. He has been a Trade Secretary and a Transportation and Communications Secretary as well. He has dealt with international, cyber, and technology issues. Now he must be allowed to assist PNoy in running the governmental and political units that deal with basic domestic problems.

PNoy should appoint “Mr. Palengke” as DILG Secretary!

Again, I must reiterate that I do not have ties with PNoy and the Liberal Party. Neither do I know Roxas personally. I met him only once when I introduced the eBook technology in the Philippines. In fact, my barber and I mistakenly identified him as being an Araneta who was related to Irene Marcos Araneta’s husband.

I am making this suggestion because I care about the Philippines. Never have I seen as clear an opportunity for real reforms than at this point in our history.

I am convinced that it is in DILG that we could find a new generation of young leaders who would emulate PNoy, Robredo and possibly Roxas in preparing and instituting social, political and economic reforms for the sake of the current and the next generations.

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