Secretary of Foreign Affairs Enrique A. Manalo shaking his hands with Senate President Miguel Zubiri, CA members, and other nominees | Photo courtesy of PCOO
NEW YORK – The Commission on Appointments (CA), at its plenary session on September 28, presided over by Juan Miguel Zubiri, Senate President and CA chairperson, has confirmed the appointment of Foreign Affairs Secretary Enrique A. Manalo upon the recommendation of the foreign affairs committee, chaired by Sen. Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada.
Estrada’s committee deliberated the merits of Manalo’s nomination after hearing his answers to questions posed by legislators, which dealt with several issues such as the West Philippine dispute, Mary Jane Veloso’s, and the Ukraine-Russia war. The new head of the department assured them to protect the country’s territory and prioritize the welfare of Filipinos.
Manalo previously served as Permanent Representative of the Philippines to the United Nations and followed his predecessor, Teodoro Locsin, Jr., who took over the helm of the Department of Foreign Affairs in 2020.
Manalo is recognized for his long foreign service career and his vast diplomacy experience. The committee previously suspended the deliberations on his nomination at its meeting on August 31. President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. swore him in as Secretary of Foreign Affairs on July 1, 2022.
The CA also confirmed the appointment of Budget and Management Secretary Amenah Flaminiano Pangandaman on the recommendation of Budget and Management Committee chairperson Sen. Grace Poe.
Sen. Francis “Tol” N. Tolentino, the chairperson of the Justice and Judicial and Bar Council committee, recommended to CA the approval of the ad interim appointment of Nesauro Hernandez Firme as Judicial and Bar Council (JBC)ember representing the Academe for a term expiring July 9, 2026.
Also joining the DFA chief’s confirmation are 23 DFA senior officials whose nominations were likewise given the nod by the CA.
–With Ricky Rillera