Rodrigo Duterte must be the only Philippine president since 1986 who has gotten rid of so many people he has directly hired.
In this piece for South China Morning Post (HK), Alan takes a look at the very quick turnover of senior staff that Duterte has been doing in his two years in office. And how this affects his programs and promises.
We tried getting the side of Malacanang Palace for this piece. But there was no response.
IF DUTERTE’S SO PROUD OF FIRING CORRUPT OFFICIALS, WHY HIRE THEM?
Supporters of the Philippine president make a virtue of how many people he has fired from his administration, claiming it reflects a no-nonsense approach. Critics say the nonsense is that he hired them in the first place
BY ALAN ROBLES
19 NOV 2018
A foreign secretary who turned out to be a foreigner; a justice secretary who cleared a drug criminal who had already confessed; a tourism secretary who kicked millions in fat contracts back to her brothers; a labour undersecretary who stole a congressman’s mobile phone.
When Rodrigo Duterte became the president of the Philippines two years ago, his subordinates bragged about how he would pack his administration with “the best and the brightest”. The problem is, he can’t seem to find them.
A third of the way into his six-year term, Duterte has already dismissed more than 30 high-ranking appointees, at least six of them cabinet rank, largely because of corruption, partly due to incompetence, sometimes because of both. As Bobby Brillante, spokesperson of the political support group Mayor Rodrigo Roa Duterte National Executive Coordinating Council, puts it: “The turnover is indeed unusual”. Brillante traces it to the president’s “frustration with people he appointed and expected to perform with competence, honesty and integrity”.