MANILA – The camps of incoming vice-president Leni Robredo and outgoing vice-president Jejomar Binay have finalized the transition process for the Office of the Vice President.
Benjamin Martinez, chief of staff of Vice President Jejomar Binay, officially turned over to the transition team of Vice President-elect Leni Robredo the transition report of the OVP.
The two teams met for close to two hours, discussing the staffing, budget and other operational matters concerning the OVP.
Based on the records, the OVP still has P422 million left out of the P500 million budget of the OVP for 2016.
Foremost on the agenda was whether or not Robredo will hold office at the Coconut Palace. The palace is being rented at P484,000 every month, which Robredo finds too expensive.
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The transition teams also inspected the OVP office housed at the PNB Building. The OVP started renting the 7th floor of the PNB Building in 2008.
Around 75 employees from the administrative, human resource and finance divisions are housed in the building. The personnel who just live near the area expressed concern about moving the office to another location, given Robredo's previous pronouncements that she is looking for ways to lower the rental and maintenance expenses of the OVP.
The PNB is being rented at P312,000 monthly. Boyet Dy, head of Robredo's transition team, assured them that the PNB offices will not be moved, at least until December 2016 when the contract expires.
Dy added that the staff will be consulted before any decision will be made to ensure a smooth transition.
He said they still have not yet finalized where Robredo will hold office, but they are open to staying temporarily at the Coconut Palace if they are still unable to find a place by July 1, the start of her term.
Dy also shared that they are assessing the staffing needs of the office.
The OVP only has 26 co-terminus positions and 7 vacant permanent positions.
Given the limited number, Dy said they need to make sure that the people they will hire will be maximized to ensure that the advocacies of Robredo are realized.
Martinez and Dy said a meeting between Binay and Robredo will be set up as soon as the details of the transition have been ironed out.