Newly-appointed Cabinet Secretary Secretary Karlo Alexei Nograles on Monday thanked President Rodrigo Duterte for the opportunity to serve in the Cabinet, saying he hopes to help push the administration’s development agenda.
Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo said the lawmaker for Davao City’s first district took his oath of office Monday afternoon, taking the post vacated by Leoncio “Jun” Evasco, who is running for governor of Bohol in next year’s elections.
“I thank President Duterte for welcoming me to his Cabinet. As a fellow Mindanaoan and ‘probinsyano
,’ I hope to contribute to government efforts to bring development to the regions through different programs that place an emphasis on providing more economic opportunities outside Metro Manila,” said Nograles.
“He enjoys the trust and confidence of the appointing power of the President,” Panelo added of Nograles, who was chairman of the House Committee on Appropriations.
Other lawmakers, led by House Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, welcomed Nograles’ appointment.
“I am sure he will do very well in his new position, and that he will be a valuable member of the President’s team. I wish him all the best!” Arroyo said.
Former Speaker and Quezon City Rep. Feliciano Belmonte Jr. said Nograles was an asset to the Duterte administration.
“Karlo is very capable. He will do justice to the position,” Belmonte said.
Reps. Alfredo Benitez of Negros Occidental, Ben Evardone of Eastern Samar, Gus Tambunting of Parañaque City, Rodolfo Albano III of Isabela, and Jericho Nograles of PBA party-list were all happy for Nograles, son of former Speaker and bar topnotcher Prospero Nograles Jr.
“It’s a challenging position. But Rep. Karlo Nograles is young and talented and can easily overcome those obstacles,” Benitez, chairman of the House Committee on Housing and Urban Development, said.
“We welcome his appointment. He will be an asset to the Duterte administration,” Evardone, chairman of the House Committee on Public Information, said.
The 42 year-old Nograles said that though this was his first position in the executive branch, he hoped his experience as chairperson of the House appropriations committee would provide him with the kind of “holistic perspective” needed in his new post.
“As Appropriations Chair, one has to be familiar with the financial resources of the government’s different agencies, as well as have a general idea of their main trusts and major programs,” said the Davao native.
“This is knowledge and experience I believe I can put to good use in my new position. And with the guidance and input of the senior officials in the Cabinet, like Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea and Finance Secretary Sonny Dominguez, I hope to hit the ground running and do whatever I can to help the President.”
As Cabinet Secretary, Nograles will head the Cabinet Secretariat, which under Executive Order No. 67 is tasked to assist the President “in the establishment of agenda topics for Cabinet deliberation” and “facilitate the discussion of Cabinet meetings.”
The EO also states that the Cabinet Secretariat “shall serve as the head secretariat of the different Cabinet Cluster secretariats” and shall “participate in the National Economic and Development Authority Board and committee meetings.”
Nograles, who was serving his third term as representative of the first district of Davao City when the President tapped him to take over Evasco’s post, thanked his erstwhile constituents for their support, and pledged to continue finding ways to improve their lives.
According to Panelo, Nograles’ appointment has already been decided by Duterte as early as two weeks ago.