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Angara open to being DepEd chief

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PHILIPPINE Senator Juan Edgardo M. Angara on Monday said President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. had not offered him the Education secretary post, but said he would be up for the job if appointed.

“I am open to the job if ever I am entrusted with it,” he told reporters in Filipino on the sidelines of a Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day event in Baler, Quezon, based on a video posted on X by News 5.

“President Bongbong probably needs time, as he mentioned, to think about and carefully choose a suitable individual for the position,” he added.

In a letter to the President dated June 24 and made public on June 28, the Philippine Business for Education included the senator in their list of suitable replacements for Vice-President Sara Duterte-Carpio, who resigned without giving a reason.

The group recommended Social Welfare Secretary Rexlon T. Gatchlian, Negros Occidental Rep. Jose Francisco B. Benitez and education and community development advocate Milwida M. Guevarra as suitable replacements.

Mr. Marcos earlier said he would name Ms. Duterte-Carpio’s replacement by the end of last week.

“He (Mr. Angara) has advocated policies that have significantly impacted education, employment, entrepreneurship and the economy in general,” PBED said in its letter.

Last week, Senate President Francis “Chiz” G. Escudero backed the proposal for the President to appoint his colleague as Education secretary, saying he would be an “excellent choice.”

Mr. Angara was one of the five senators who filed a resolution calling for the creation of the Second Congressional Commission on Education and is co-chairman of its governance and finance standing committee.

He was also one of the authors of a 2017 law that gave free access to state university education.

“We are grateful for the vote of confidence, because I got to work with them (senators) and they know that we are serious on the job,” Mr. Angara said. — John Victor D. Ordoñez

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