CA rejects Taguiwalo, bucks popular support for ‘hard-working secretary’

The Commission on Appointments (CA) recommended not to confirm Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) secretary Judy Taguiwalo in a hearing Wednesday.

Bucking popular nationwide support for Taguiwalo, at least 13 CA members constituting the commission’s majority voted against the secretary’s confirmation.

The CA resolution read by Rep. Joel Almario did not give a reason for their negative vote.

Sen. Ralph Recto, however, praised Taguiwalo’s year-long leadership of the DSWD saying she should not be dismissed as a “token Leftist” in the Rodrigo Duterte Cabinet.

As a nominee of the underground National Democratic Front of the Philippines, Taguiwalo (NDFP) was hounded at the CA hearings by questions on her past as a guerrilla fighting the Ferdinand Marcos dictatorship.

Sen. Loren Legarda also expressed gratitude to Taguiwalo, saying she had been a “hard-working secretary.”

Duterte gave Taguiwalo six ad interim appointments before the CA rejection.

Fellow NDFP nominee to the Duterte Cabinet, Agrarian Reform secretary Rafael Mariano is also expected to face rough waters in his next confirmation hearing.

National Anti-Poverty Commission lead convenor Lisa Maza, another NDFP nominee, does not require a CA confirmation to stay in office.

Earlier, hundreds of Taguiwalo supporters held a rally in front of the Senate gates.

Social media also lit up with calls for Taguiwalo’s confirmation. # (R. Villanueva)