KOKO PIMENTEL – PUNO SHOULD ALSO RESIGN AS DILG CHIEF
17 SEPTEMBER 2009
REF: JOEY SALGADO
PDP-Laban Secretary General Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III today called for the resignation of Interior and Local Government Secretary Ronaldo Puno to allay suspicions that he will use his authority to coerce local government officials into supporting the administration’s Teodoro-Puno tandem.
“The post of DILG Secretary is a powerful position. And therefore, it should not only be Secretary Gilbert Teodoro who should resign, but also Secretary Puno,” he said.
Pimentel said Cabinet members enjoy undue advantage over other aspirants for national office because of the government resources at their disposal and the authority they exert over government agencies and personnel.
“Appointed governmental officials who have declared their intention to run and have been endorsed by their respective political parties should relinquish their positions,” he said.
“In the case of Secretary Puno, he needs to allay suspicions that he will use his position as DILG chief to arm-twist local government officials into supporting his vice presidential bid, and that of his presumptive standard bearer, Secretary Teodoro,” he said.
By resigning, Pimentel said Puno “will also be able to address fears that the Philippine National Police, which is also under his supervision, will be involved in partisan political activities.”
Last Wednesday, the National Executive Committee of the Lakas-KAMPI-CMD named Teodoro as its presidential candidate for the 2010 election, and Puno as his running mate.