President Duterte has asked Department of Budget of Management (DBM) officer-in-charge Undersecretary Tina Rose Marie Canda to continue being strict to save the government from any possible headaches when it comes to the nation’s budgetary needs.
Duterte made the statement following the “deficiencies” cited by the Commission on Audit (COA) in its recent reports.
In his public address aired on August 21, the President recognized Canda’s “reputation” as a strict undersecretary at the DBM. He asked the latter to continue being strict to spare the government of any headaches and to protect the people’s interests.
“Sabi nila istrikta ka daw, Ma’am… Pero mas mabuti (They said you are strict, Ma’am. But that’s better for us),” Duterte said.
“The stricter you are, the better. Mas malayo tayo sa sakit ng ulo, mas malayo tayo sa kaso ‘pag inistrikto tayo (We will be spared of the headaches and lawsuits if you remain strict),” he added.
“So continue being strict and continue being the protector of the people’s interest. Thank you very much,” he continued.
Canda has been named OIC of the DBM following the resignation of former Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado early this month due to health reasons.
In his most recent public address, President Duterte said Avisado was weak already and that his workload at the DBM would have killed him if he carried on with his duties.
“Tinamaan talaga siya sa COVID-19 sa totoo lang. Hospitalized for almost 10 days and 30 days na immobilized (COVID-19 really hit him hard. He was almost hospitalized for 10 days and immobilized for 30 days),” he said.
“Sa tingin ko pagka ‘yung volume ng trabaho nito, sa DBM, iyon ang papatay sa kanya (I think the volume of his job at the DBM would kill him),” he added.
In a statement on July 31, the DBM said Avisado was advised by his doctor to take a series of medical tests since it had been 14 years since his quadruple open heart bypass.
By August 7, Avisado wrote a resignation letter to the President, saying he needed to take a rest and regain better health.