Robredo says her DOTr secretary would be 'respected' by transport sector

Published January 17, 2022, 9:08 AM

by Raymund Antonio

Presidential aspirant Vice President Leni Robredo told the transport sector that they will have a “say” on who she will appoint as the secretary of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and head of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) if she wins in May 2022.

Vice President Leni Robredo (OVP photo)

During a virtual consultative meeting via Zoom recently, Robredo assured representatives of the transport group that she will appoint an “expert” and someone whom the sector trusts.

“’Yung sa kin Mar (Valbuena, a transport sector representative) ang ma-aassure ko sayo number one, sisiguraduhin natin na hindi lang, hindi lang mahusay– hindi lang eksperto sa transportation. Hindi lang eksperto sa transportation ‘yung ma-aappoint pero pangalawa, respetado ng sektor (For me, Mar, what I can assure you is number one, we will make sure that he’s not just competent—not only an expert in transportation. The appointed should not only be an expert in appointment but secondly, respected by the sector),” she said.

The Vice President stressed that it’s hard to appoint someone the transport sector does not respect.

She promised the transport group that they will have a “say” on who she will appoint as transport secretary, and that they would be a part of the vetting process of the secretary and other transportation officials.

“Kasi hindi puwede kasing ang relationship ng pamahalaan saka kayo, magkatunggali. Dapat ‘yung relationship ng pamahalaan saka ng– ng sektor, magkakampi, magkatuwang di ba (The relationship of the government and you cannot be antagonistic. The relationship of the government and the sector should be an alliance, cooperative, right)?,” Robredo added.

READ: Leni appeals to transportation officials

The aspiring president also highlighted that she will only work with someone who shares her belief in participatory governance.

“Ang paniniwala natin (My belief is that the) driving force ng (of) governance ‘yung (is) inclusivity saka (and) empowerment,” she said.

This came after a representative from Manibela, Mar Valbuena, raised his concern that Transportation Arthur Tugade does not listen to their concerns about the impact of the pandemic on their sector.

Robredo shared that the environment sector raised similar concerns during a virtual meeting.

“Gustong sabihin, kailangan ‘yung lahat ng ma-aappoint ko hindi lang sa (What I mean is that everyone I will appoint and not only in) transport, kailangan ‘yung lahat ng ma-aappoint ko sa (all that I will appoint in the) Cabinet, pareho ‘yung paniniwala sa akin na (holds the same belief with me that) number one sa lahat, pinapakinggan at naglalagay ng mekanismo na ‘yung sektor na pinagsisilbihan ay kabahagi sa (listens and puts mechanism that the sector to serve is part of) governance,” she said.

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While Robredo admits that the government and the sectors will not always agree on things, she wants to make sure that there are mechanisms for them to air their grievances.

Robredo, as well as her running mate Sen. Francis ‘Kiko’ Pangilinan and several candidates in her senatorial lineup, have been doing consultative meetings in a bid to listen to the sectors’ concerns. This is patterned after the Naga City People’s Council (NCPC), which was established by Robredo’s husband, the late former Interior secretary and Naga City mayor Jesse Robredo.