MANILA - Newly appointed Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddy Locsin Jr. on Saturday vowed to pursue President Rodrigo Duterte's independent foreign policy.
Speaking with the department's senior officials, Locsin said he will continue to strengthen the country's relationship with its traditional allies while reaching out to new partners.
“My idea of an independent foreign policy is not to switch masters before whom we kneel but to get off our knees and stand on our feet and stand up for our country. That’s it,” he said.
It was the first time that Locsin, the country's former Permanent Representative to the United Nations, met with the department's senior officials.
He said he is looking forward to working with his new colleagues in the coming days.
“As I get to know you more in the coming days ahead, I am ready to listen to your views. Once the work starts, I do not believe in hierarchy but every one is to pitch in as an equal,” he told them.
Locsin replaced Alan Peter Cayetano who has earlier filed his certificate of candidacy for senator.
Prior to becoming an ambassador, Locsin was an ABS-CBN journalist, lawmaker, and newspaper publisher. He also served as Makati representative from 2001 to 2010.
Locsin was also the speechwriter and press secretary of then President Corazon Aquino after the People Power Revolution against the Marcos dictatorship.