Officials to file courtesy resignation before Hataman’s July 1 assumption PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 31 May 2013 11:21

Members of the regional cabinet of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao are planning to file their individual courtesy resignation soon to enable governor-elect Mujiv Hataman to freely enlist people that can help him manage the affairs of ARMM.

Hataman, victorious in his bid for an electoral mandate for the ARMM’s gubernatorial post during the May 13 regional elections, has been at the helm of the regional government since December 2011, but only as an appointed caretaker.

Lawyer Makmod Mending, Jr., who is Hataman’s local government secretary, said they might start filing their resignations by middle of June, in anticipation of Hataman’s July 1 assumption to office as duly elected regional governor.

“We want the RG (regional governor) to have a free hand in putting up a cabinet that could help him put ahead his reform agenda for ARMM and his projects meant to hasten Malañang’s Mindanao peace process,” Mending said.

Mending, who is of Maguindanaon descent, said he is certain Hataman will put up a cabinet comprised of people from all of the ARMM’s five provinces to ensure “inter-tribal representation” in the executive department of the region.

As elected ARMM governor, Hataman will exercise ministerial control over about 40 agencies devolved by the national government and other support offices and special outfits established to function as service facets of the autonomous region.

The Office of the Regional Governor , or ORG,  is touted in fact as “Little Malacañang” of ARMM, owing to its administrative and ministerial control over many public offices and departments.

“Our main concern now, the co-terminus regional secretaries, is how to be of help to the gradual transition from the present ARMM to the Bangsamoro entity the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front are to put up before the 2016 elections,” Mending said.

The MILF and the government peace panels are to replace the ARMM with a Bangsamoro entity based on the October 15, 2012 Framework Agreement on Bangsamoro.

ARMM Natural Resources Secretary Kahal Kedtag, whose appointment was confirmed early this year by the Commission on Appointments of the 27-member Regional Legislative Assembly, said they will respect the decision of Hataman if he will replace his present secretaries and the chiefs of support offices under the ORG.

“We serve at the pleasure of the governor and the millions of people he represents as elected leader of the autonomous region. We are ready for possible `changing of the guards’ in the regional government,” Kedtag said.

Hataman has been silent on the issue, but ARMM insiders said such process has been a strong tradition in the regional government, primarily aimed at allowing an incoming elected chief executive to tap people that enjoy his trust and confidence.

“The position of regional secretaries are `positions of trust and confidence’ and the appointing authority, or the regional governor, has the widest latitude of administrative and political discretion,” Mending pointed out.