MANILA, Philippines - Three Cabinet members whom President Aquino said have been giving him headaches may get the ax, not for being harbingers of bad news but for incompetence.
Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda yesterday said being bearers of bad news could not be a basis for terminating the services of a member of the official family. “Incompetence would be one, but certainly not a bearer of bad news.
He is not allergic to bad news. It’s part and parcel of his work to receive all news, whether good or bad,” he said, referring to the President. Lacierda, however, refused to identify the three Cabinet secretaries, adding that nobody asked the President about it because their meetings are focused on issues, such as last week’s storm “Falcon,” which caused massive flooding in Metro Manila.
“In the first place, I don’t know who the President is referring to. So I would be presuming too much if I would be naming them,” he said. “These meetings happen on a regular basis. So far nobody among us has asked him who are these three Cabinet secretaries.” The President, during the 113th anniversary celebration of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) on Friday, said he dreaded seeing two or three members of his Cabinet who have been giving him bad news.
Lacierda belied speculations that the President only wanted good news to be highlighted in mass media.
“That’s not true. He will not be doing this country a service if he
only wanted to hear all the good news. It is actually a way of life that our country also has its share of bad news,” he said.
“We also have a share of bad news that the country receives, and the President, being the Chief Executive of the land, you have to know all these. So it’s not true that he is allergic to bad news,” Lacierda stressed.
He said the President only wanted his official family to be always ready with possible solutions to the problems they will be presenting to him. “It’s really important for Cabinet secretaries to provide recommendations as well. We discuss the problems and we discuss the recommendations. It makes the meeting fast and with a proposed solution, the discussion becomes more fruitful,” he said. “You don’t focus only on the problems but you’re already focused on the resolution,” Lacierda added. “It’s a slew of problems and a slew of recommendations, so all Cabinet secretaries do perform their work.”
Lacierda said Filipinos should also be accustomed to the President’s sense of humor. “If you notice, the President’s humor is dry. It’s something that we Filipinos are not very used to,” he said, when asked about Aquino’s
statement that being tagged as the exact opposite of former President Gloria Macapagal -Arroyo is the best compliment he ever received.
“Ang humor kasi ng Filipino iba and if you notice, if you have been following the President he has a dry humor,” he said.
He said Filipinos should also understand that the President is just a
“jovial guy.” He said Palace reporters know Aquino’s demeanor, citing
how he cracks jokes during gatherings with them.