By Argyll Cyrus Geducos
Senator Alan Peter Cayetano is still mum on whether or not he will be appointed as the new Foreign Affairs secretary following the rejection of the Commission on Appointments (CA) on the appointment of former DFA chief Perfecto Yasay Jr.
President Duterte, upon winning the elections last year, eyed Cayetano as his alter-ego in Foreign Affairs but appointed Yasay instead due to the one-year ban on appointments for election candidates by the Commission on Elections.
However, just this month when Yasay’s confirmation was rejected by the CA, Duterte said Cayetano is better off in the Senate.
When asked whether or not he will really take the helm of the DFA, Cayetano said it is better to leave the post to a professional like acting Foreign Affairs Secretary Enrique Manalo but kept his door open to the possibility.
“Sec. Manalo and I both have the same answer. We are both committed to the country and we will both follow the leadership of President Duterte. So we will both follow whatever his decision is,” he said during the press briefer at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Bangkok.
Cayetano also said that if he does not land the DFA post, there may be other opportunities for him to serve in the government.
“So let’s see. I mean, as the President said, hindi kami nag-uusap [tungkol dito]. Maraming ibang posisyon,” he said.
Cayetano also clarified that he is only speaking on issues of international affairs and foreign relations as he is the chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs in the Senate.
“There might be things that I am needed in the Senate. Sorry for that, Secretary but I guess that’s a legitimate issue that’s why natatanong tayo parati (we are always being asked),” he said.
He also assured that his being chairman of the said committee does not interfere with the affairs of the DFA.
Cayetano is in Bangkok as part of Duterte’s delegation during his official visit to Myanmar and Thailand this week.