EO detailing Almendras job to be released Tuesday

MANILA -- An executive order that will delineate the functions of newly-appointed Secretary to the Cabinet Rene Almendras will be released on Tuesday, a Malacanang official said Monday.

The Palace earlier refused to discuss what exactly the mandate of Almendras would be, saying that it will be defined in an executive order.

"We're looking perhaps tomorrow (Tuesday) for the release," deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said when asked about the EO.

Almendras officially took his oath as Secretary to the Cabinet on Sunday before President Benigno Aquino III left for Laos to participate in the 9th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM9).

The former Energy chief denied that his position was just an accommodation for him to remain in the Cabinet, saying that his functions would not conflict with other positions in the Aquino government.

He said his job is a staff position and not a line department.

"Cabinet secretary is a staff position so it doesn't conflict with any of the line positions. The heads of the Presidential Management Staff (PMS) and the Office of the Executive Secretary have line functions. The Cabinet Secretary is a staff function," Almendras said.

He said part of his duty is to coordinate work of various Cabinet members.

Valte said evaluation of performance of the Cabinet members is not part of Almendras's duty.

"From what I understand, it's not the performance evaluation of the Cabinet members themselves. But, if you remember Administrative Order 25 that was issued sometime in 2011, it's the performance-based management system," she said.

Almendras is expected to work closely with President Aquino as he will be holding office in Malacañang.

"You will not see me. I will completely disappear into the bureaucracy," he said.

Almendras' replacement in the Energy department, Jericho Petilla, also took his oath before the President on Sunday.

Petilla vowed to continue the energy programs of the government and address power shortages in the Visayas and Mindanao. (Jill Beltran/Sunnex)

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