Palace mum on new post for Villanueva

By Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 24 2012 07:48 PM | Updated as of Sep 25 2012 03:48 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda on Monday said he has no information if it is true that Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Director General Joel Villanueva would be transferred to another post.

Lacierda stressed that Villanueva has been effective in his work to provide skills training to thousands of Filipinos.

"There is no confirmation to this, but certainly a person like Secretary Villanueva is someone we would like to retain. And whether he is transferred to another post, and there is no confirmation to this, that will certainly be a signal that he has done his job very well. Even if he is retained at TESDA alone, we expect greater employment for our TESDA scholars," Lacierda said.

Asked about possible movements in the Bureau of Customs with the reported candidacy of Ruffy Biazon for the Senate, Lacierda said: "Let's wait for his decision on the matter. That matter is being discussed right now by the party leadership."

Villanueva earlier announced he will no longer be running for any elective position in the 2013 mid-term elections after being requested by President Aquino to stay at TESDA.

"The President was very articulate in giving me the present scenario and requesting me to remain in the Cabinet so I can continue helping him in accomplishing reforms and programs," he told ANC.

Earlier reports said Villanueva might be moved to either the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, Department of Energy, Bureau of Customs, Bureau of Immigration, or the National Food Authority.

Villanueva, however, said he has not been offered a position in any of these agencies, and that he prefers to still stay in TESDA as he has grown to love the agency.