Duterte fires Sueno as DILG Secretary

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MANILA, Philippines — Citing loss of trust and confidence, President Rodrigo R. Duterte last night, April 3,  fired Interior Secretary Mike Sueno during the 14th Cabinet meeting held in Malacanang.

Sueno, one of those who convinced the president to run for presidency in 2015.

During the meeting, Abella added “The President had earlier asked a few questions of Mr. Sueno but the summary dismissal served as a warning that Mr. Duterte would not countenance any questionable or legally untenable decisions by any member of the Cabinet.

“The Secretary had, in fact, been instrumental in convincing the President to run for election, but this did not deter the President from pursuing his drive for a trustworthy government by addressing issues like corruption,” Abella added.

Allegations

Earlier on three Undersecretaries– John Castriciones, Jesus Hinlo, and Emily Padilla wrote the president informing him that Sueno failed to perform his officials duties but instead focused himself in establishing business in his province.

* Sueno purchased firetrucks from Austria, which were bought for P20 million when there were cheaper alternatives.

*Another letter stated Sueno owned a hotel in South Cotabato and a trucking business – all beyond his means, they said – and;

* Sueno got payoffs from illegal gambling.

But Sueno denied all these. He admitted though, the hotel is owned by his younger brother and the trucks belonged to his daughter.

Sueno said “there was an offer from gambling lords, but I rejected it.”

During  the Cabinet meeting, “The President had earlier asked a few questions of Mr. Sueno but the summary dismissal served as a warning that Mr Duterte would not countenance any questionable or legally untenable decisions by any member of the Cabinet,” Abella’s statement read.

“The Secretary had, in fact, been instrumental in convincing the President to run for election, but this did not deter the President from pursuing his drive for a trustworthy government by addressing issues like corruption,” he continued.

Eve of his dismissal, Sueno asked regional directors of DILG to submit the hastily prepared manifesto of support for him sensing something is brewing Malacanang but the paper did not serve any purpose, he was dismissed.

“We, the officials and employees of DILG-NCR, the center of excellence in local governance and innovations, express our unconditional support to the thrusts and advocacies of the Department of the Interior and Local Government under the strong leadership of Secretary Ismael D. Sueno,”a portion of the manifesto read.

Earlier on, Duterte even joked “Ito si DILG sige lang abroad, palaging wala, ano na kaya nangyayari sa department nya? (This DILG is always going abroad, always absent, what is happening in his department?)

It was learned that Sueno during his term frozen  three of his undersecretaries and favored only one who served as his alter-ego everytime he leaves the country.

The internal bickering inside DILG was known to Duterte who secretly asked for an investigation.

Last night, Duterte fired Sueno. He has yet to name  the new Secretary.

Be informed
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