DAVAO CITY – The national campaign manager of presumptive president Mayor Rodrigo Duterte leads the Transition Committee formed on Wednesday to start working necessary to make easy a smooth hand-off from current administration of President Benigno Aquino III.
The Duterte Transition Committee are composed of Campaign Manager Leoncio Jun Evasco; Assistant Campaign Manager and Executive Assistant Christopher Bong Go; Carlos G. Dominguez, former cabinet member and Head of Campaign Finance Committee; lawyers Salvador Medialdea and Loreto Ata, personal layers of the presumptive president, and Peter Laviña, the head of the Duterte-Cayetano Media Team.
Also around to provide support were members of the core group Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, former Transportation Secretary and elected Davao del Norte congressional representative Pantaleon Alvarez, former press secretary Jesus Dureza and first district Representative Karlo Alexei Nograles. Former presidential assistant for Mindanao Paul Dominguez was also seen at Marco Polo.
The meeting followed a call from Aquino to Duterte congratulating the latter for winning the presidential elections with an assurance of facilitating a smooth transition. Aquino is also expected to form his transition committee to work with Duterte’s team.
Bong Go confirmed to the media that Aquino called Duterte on Tuesday night.
The transition team will only be one of the groups that will be formed to lay the grounds for Duterte’s assumption into office.
Earlier, Laviña said there is also the search committee and the team that will plan for Duterte’s inauguration.
According to him, the transition committee will help the mayor identify members of the cabinet and create a team to review Duterte and Cayetano’s policy statements during the campaign.
The transition committee will also coordinate with Malacañang officials following a statement by the chief of the Presidential Communications Group Herminio Coloma offering help for transition.
For the inauguration, Laviña said they would coordinate with Malacanang on protocols.
A team will also be identifying personal envoy to communicate with head of embassies in the Philippines, churches, civil society organizations, Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police, business chambers, World Bank, Japan International Cooperating Agency (JICA), Asian Development Bank, among others.
Meanwhile, the members of the mayor’s core group vowed to work that Duterte’s administration will succeed that will include in Congress.
When asked if there are senators or congressional representatives who have jumped ship or expressed to support Duterte.
Cayetano said it is up for the Senate if they want to support the administration or not but they will always welcome offers of support.
Alvarez said they are doing their best that Duterte’s administration will not be a failure. “Ayaw natin na failure ang bagong administration kaya ginagawa natin ito para suportahan yong bagong nakaupo kung ano programa niya (We do not like the new administration to be a failure that is why we are doing this so that the new one who sits there is supported… what is his program),” Alvarez said.
Alvarez added that it should not be if “you are on the other side you are already an enemy.”
On the other hand, Go assured that Duterte is not vindictive. “Pag tapos na ang election talo na ang tao bagsak na tutulungan ka pa. Hindi vindictive si mayor (When the election is finish…the person lost and down he would help. The mayor is not vindictive),” he assured.