Agri reform chief unfazed by CA rejection of Taguiwalo


Posted at Aug 25 2017 07:36 PM

FILE PHOTO: Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano (center) poses with farmers at the Hacienda Luisita in Tarlac, October 2016. Romeo Mariano, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano said Friday he is not worried about facing the Commission on Appointments next week after it rejected the appointment of Judy Taguiwalo, his fellow militant leader, as Social Welfare Secretary.

"Alam naman nila ang tindig ko sa usapin ng repormang agraryo... Ako ay masugid na tagapagpatayo ng agraryong reporma, sa mga nagbubungkal ng lupa na wala pang lupa," said Mariano.
President Rodrigo Duterte appointed Taguiwalo and Mariano to his cabinet at the start of his term, opening his government to the left in a bid to restart long-stalled peace negotiations with communist rebels. 

The CA earlier this month rejected Taguiwalo's appointment, about a month after Duterte suspended peace talks due to a string of attacks by the communist New People's Army on state troops. 

Mariano, who will face the CA on Wednesday, said at least 8 members of the panel are familiar with his work at the House of Representatives when he was still sectoral representative for Anakpawis party-list. 

He added that his appointment was also an indication of Duterte's trust in him. -- Report from Carolyn Bonquin, ABS-CBN News