News Release

PBBM says he can quickly effect change, needed reforms if he stays as DA chief

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. said Monday he hasn’t appointed a permanent secretary for the Department of Agriculture (DA) because he wants to carry out reforms more quickly.

During an interview with the press, the President was asked about the calls of some legislators for him to appoint a permanent secretary of the DA who can focus on the agriculture sector.

“For me sa DA, there really are things that I can do if there was a secretary and he or she did it… magagawa pero matagal, madaming diskusyon,” said the President, who concurrently holds the DA portfolio.

“The President they cannot say no to. And ‘pag hindi nila ginawa ‘yung utos ko, puwede kong sitahin. Iyong secretary… may pakiusap pa,” Marcos pointed out.

According to the chief executive, what he brings to the position is that when he makes a decision or plan, everyone needs to follow, and if not, he can chastise officials or move them to other positions.

“But generally speaking, if the President asked you to do something, they’ll do it. If there’s somebody else to it, they may do it – they’ll probably do it, but they may not. So we want to take that wiggle room out of that system,” Marcos said.

In a recent interview in Switzerland, President Marcos said he would appoint a permanent secretary of agriculture who is an expert in the field, stressing he wants to do the “old, hard things” at the department.

The DA chief should be an agriculture expert who understands the science and the solution, Marcos said, noting the sector is a very complicated subject.

The President’s “dreams” for the country’s agriculture sector are attaining sustainable livelihood for farmers, having affordable food for all, as well as food security. #