Marcos in final stage of choosing remaining Cabinet members

Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 04 2022 01:09 PM | Updated as of Jul 04 2022 01:58 PM

MANILA - President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has not set a deadline on when he plans to complete his Cabinet, including naming Secretaries for several agencies crucial during the pandemic, his Press Secretary said on Monday.

Marcos has yet to name the heads of the following:

- Department of Energy
- Department of Environment and Natural Resources
- Department of Health
- Department of Science and Technology

"Masuri talaga ang pag-evaluate nila dito sa mga kandidato para sa mga posisyon," Press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles said in a press briefing.

"I understand that these are already undergoing the final stage, so I don't think it would take too long," she added.

Angeles declined to confirm if Secretary Francisco Duque III and former Health Secretary Janette Garin were among those being considered to head the Health Department.

"One of the priorities is managing the effects of the pandemic. They must look very carefully and closely at the candidate," she said.

"Ang sinasabi lang namin, dumadaan sa matinding pagsusuri. Wala tayong sinasabing nahihirapan. These are important positions, so kailangan dumaan sa butas ng karayom," she said.

So far, Marcos would keep the status quo when it comes to COVID-19 policies, Angeles said.

The concerned department secretaries will be "given the opportunities to make the assessment" on whether or not pandemic-related policies would be adjusted.

Over the weekend, the DOH said it wants to add COVID-19 vaccines to the government's regular immunization program.

Stakeholders are also waiting on who will be the next Energy chief as oil prices in the country spiked in recent months due to Russia's continued invasion of Ukraine.

Some sectors are waiting to see how the new DOE Secretary would include nuclear power in the Philippines' energy mix.

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