Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Binay as DILG sec, Ochoa as AFP Chief of Staff?

Congress had final count---Aquino for President and Binay for Vice President. Aquino led other contenders with a wide margin of 5 million, while Binay led Mar Roxas with a mere 700,000 votes. In Aquino's case, it was quite evident that the Liberal party camp acted as a united front, with voters who really believed in their cause, probably voted both Aquino and Mar. The effort, however, just fell somewhat shorter.

The final tally shows that there was really nothing going on between those who campaigned for both and those who only campaigned for Aquino and never Roxas. It did not matter. They don't really count that much during the elections.

In the case of Binay's party, definitely, there was something terribly wrong with what happened. Imagine, Binay got 13 million votes and his standard bearer Joseph Estrada got a little tad higher than 9 million or a difference of 4 million. It seems that Binay really stabbed Erap in the back. If Binay did it to an old friend, what more with Aquino?

With Binay as vice president and wanting the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) post, I fear that this will create destabilization and animosity within the new government.

Putting Binay at the DILG post will surely be destabilizing. All Binay will do there is simply prepare the way for his campaign for the presidential post come 2016. Or, use the agency to take revenge against his political enemies and make it as a vehicle for pressuring others to support him. Binay wants to be a Ronnie Puno. Aquino must realize this quick and avoid this from happening.

Binay should be put where he truly belongs---as Boy Scout of the Philippines head and maybe designate him as one of the commissioners of Human Rights, not appoint him in any line agency.

By the way, to resolve the Bangit dilemma, there are two senior officers who definitely deserves the post of AFP Chief of Staff.

Since generals Marayag and Rodrigo Maclang are set to retire by today, sources said Lt. General Nestor Ochoa, presently assigned at the National Development Support Command and Rear Admiral Mario Catacutan, AFP deputy chief for logistics are fit and ready to serve under the Aquino administration.

I've checked these two officers and they don't have any taint of corruption in them. They are professional soldiers. They enjoy the respect of the troops. Either one can be a very good replacement with outgoing AFP Chief of Staff General Bangit. Both are members of PMA Class 1977.

If retired Lt. General Voltaire Gazmin will succeed Norberto Gonzales as Defense secretary, then, he will definitely work well together with either of the two gentlemen. Gazmin is being asked by Aquino to serve under him in the defense portfolio.

Other prospective appointments are:

1. DSWD-- Dingky Soliman
2. Presidential adviser on the peace process Teresita Deles
3. Executive secretary Pocholo Ochoa
4. Trade and Industry secretary Bertie Lim
5. Department of Agriculture (one of the undersecretaries there)
6. Foreign Affairs--Alberto Romulo
7. Education portfolio--a fight among Abad and two others
8. Defense---Lt. General Voltaire Gazmin
9. Finance---Cesar Purisima
10. DOTC---a high executive close to Aquino and Ateneo graduate. Secret.:-)
11. DOJ---a fight between an old name and a new one. The new one is a highly respected young lawyer.
12. Press secretary---hopefully Maria Montelibano
13. DOT---an old marketing lady who is involved in the tourism industry for quite a long time now.
14. CUSTOMS--a retired military who hates corruption.
15. IMMIGRATION---a young lawyer from Ateneo
16. BIR---a young lawyer from private practice.