MANILA Appointed government officials will keep their posts as long as they enjoy the trust and confidence of President Rodrigo R. Duterte, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said Tuesday.
It's a matter of trust and confidence. It's the President who has the authority to terminate such appointment, Guevarra said when sought for comment on Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque's announcement during a Palace briefing before joining President Duterte in a send-off ceremony of Filipino scientists who will be conducting maritime research in the Philippine Rise.
Guevarra made the statement in response to the President's call for two assistant secretaries, one of them is Justice Assistant Secretary Moslemen Macarambon, to tender their resignation or get fired due to their alleged involvement in corruption.
My understanding is the President appointed someone to replace DOJ (Department of Justice) Asec Macarambon, so that is effectively a termination. No other acts needed, he explained.
Last month, Guevarra asked all DOJ undersecretaries and assistant secretaries to tender their resignations to give him a free hand to perform his mandate.
Aside from Macarambon, Malacanang also called on Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Assistant Secretary Tingagun Ampaso Umpa to quit his post.
Citing investigation results from the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC), Roque said Macarambon has regularly been intervening on behalf of suspected smugglers of gold and other precious jewelry at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
But Macarambon denied allegations that he has been intervening on behalf of gold and jewelry smugglers at the NAIA.
As far as I'm concerned I did not do anything wrong, Macarambon told reporters in a phone interview.
He explained he only asked the Bureau of Customs (BOC) to re-compute the taxes of his daughter's in-laws over the gold and jewelry they bought worth PHP7 million.
After being asked to pay P6 million in taxes, Macarambon said the in-laws of his daughter were only asked to pay P1.38 million following the re-computation in December last year.
Despite this, Macarambon said that he will "write a letter" addressed to President Duterte to explain his side.
As a matter a fact I will write him (President Duterte) a letter I will explain my side, he said.
I just want to clear my name kasi yang pag-resign namin nasa kanya na yun (It's up to the President if he will accept my resignation.) But I just want to clear my name. Wala akong ginawa masama (I did not do anything wrong), Macarambon stressed. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency