Aquino eyes 2 senators for Cabinet

June 7, 2012

Juliet Labog-Javellana
Philippine Daily Inquirer
June 7, 2012

LONDON –  President Benigno Aquino III has said that he was considering two senators, whose terms will expire next year, to join  his Cabinet.

In an interview with reporters here, Aquino said  he planned to tap Senators Francis  Pangilinan and Panfilo Lacson to be part of his team  if they wanted to.

“Those two in particular,’’ Aquino said during a coffee meeting with reporters on Wednesday before he left for the United States.

Pangilinan and Lacson are among the senators who would complete their two six-year terms at the Senate and were not eligible for re-election.

Lacson, a chief of police during the Estrada administration, is said to be eyeing the post of interior secretary, whose department has supervision over the police while Pangilinan is said to be interested in the agriculture department.

The President declined to say what Cabinet posts he had in mind for the two graduating senators, saying he would consult them first.

“Well, number one, we are not going to coerce anyone to accept any position. We will talk with them. If they have advocacies that they think they can do for the Executive, we are open to them,’’ he said.

Mr. Aquino had a three-day official visit to enhance trade and economic relations between the Philippines and the United Kingdom. He met with British Prime Minister David Cameron, Duke of York Prince Andrew and presided over the signing of business agreements worth $1.03 billion.

He left Wednesday evening for Washington D.C. to meet with US President Barack Obama.

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