By Argyll Cyrus Geducos
President Duterte revealed that Senator Gringo Honasan is still pondering about accepting his offer to head the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT).
Duterte made the statement following reports that Honasan will be succeeding the said post from Eliseo Rio beginning January next year.
In an interview with reporters in Boracay, Duterte confirmed that he offered the post to Honasan but said that he is unsure if the senator will be accepting his offer.
“I think he’s considering the possibility. Ako naman (Me), I invited him. Sabi ko (I told him), ‘If you are not doing anything and if you will not run again, so why don’t you join me in our quest for a better Philippines a better government,'” Duterte said Thursday evening.
“I think he is toying with the idea. But I’m not sure if he has decided to actually join,” he added.
Meanwhile, Duterte said he does not think he will hire more political advisers following the resignation of Francis Tolentino who decided to try his luck anew in next year’s senatorial race.
“Marami na eh (I have plenty). I do not see any immediate need to appoint political advisers,” he said.
Duterte, meanwhile, said he is still scouting for his new mouthpiece as he said he does not think that Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo will not last as Presidential Spokesperson. Panelo took over the post after Harry Roque resigned to run for senate in the 2019 polls.
“I don’t think he (Panelo) can position himself to a spokesman. Maybe in the meantime, but I’m considering other names,” he said.
The President, however, refused to reveal the list of potential Presidential Spokesperson but said he prefers that that person be someone from the media.
“Mahirap mag… I’m scouting for… pero (It’s difficult to reveal names. I’m scouting for… but) preferably one from media community. Sanay eh. Sanay mag (You are used to your colleagues)… You would know how to respond to questions,” Duterte said.
Duterte then, in jest, offered the Presidential Spokesperson post to ABS-CBN’s Malacañang reporter Pia Gutierrez after the President blasted the network anew for supposedly not airing his ads during the campaign season in 2016.
The President said that Gutierrez is not part of his anger towards the media giant.
“Hindi ka kasali (I am not mad at you), ma’am. You were not yet with ABS-CBN when these things happened. It is really true, it’s a matter of record,” Duterte said.