PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte has appointed former military chief Roy Cimatu as the new head of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea confirmed the news on Monday after Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol announced in a Facebook post the appointment of Cimatu.

Piñol said the President made the announcement during his meeting with Cabinet officials on Monday to "put an end to all speculations" as to who will get the environment portfolio.

Cimatu replaced Regina Paz "Gina" Lopez after the powerful Commission on Appointments rejected with finality her ad interim appointment as DENR chief.

To recall, the President introduced Cimatu as the newest Cabinet member during his speech at the opening ceremony of the Palarong Pambansa 2017.

Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella then said Cimatu was designated as special envoy for overseas Filipino workers refugees.

Cimatu was appointed by Duterte in September last year as the Philippines' special envoy to Middle East.

Cimatu, a member of the Philippine Military Academy Class of 1970, also served as the chief-of-staff of the Armed of the Philippines from May to September in 2002. (SunStar Philippines)


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