MANILA, Philippines - Executive Secretary Paquito "Jojo" Ochoa Jr. has defended President Benigno Aquino III from criticisms that he is too focused on uncovering anomalies committed by the previous administration.
Ochoa, on ANC's Headstart on Tuesday, also explained why the President did not mention the reproductive health (RH) bill in his State of the Nation Address (SONA).
He said exposés on alleged irregularities in the past are part of measures to restore the people's trust in the government.
"Sa totoo lang, we keep discovering things in the past. We can't turn a blind eye," he said. "These are things that are coming out on their own."
Ochoa said Aquino "is trying to convey to us the real meaning of what public service is, public service is public trust."
"(He) wants to encourage everybody to believe again in government," he added.
He said corrupt policies got in the way of progress in the previous administration.
Ochoa said the President did not mention the RH bill in the SONA because he wants to reconcile his views with the church.
He added that Palace's doors are still open for a dialogue.
Ochoa also fended off criticism that he is not fit to be executive secretary.
He said he is not obsessed with keeping his position and he is ready to resign upon the President's orders.
"Hindi naman kami incompetent," he said. "Wala lang kaming external sovereignty issues." - ANC