Robredo can be fired as drug czar -- Guevarra

November 17, 2019
Leni Robredo

JUSTICE Secretary Menardo Guevarra yesterday said President Duterte may remove any appointee at his pleasure, more especially if trust and confidence, which is the principal basis of any appointment, is lost.

Guevarra issued the statement when asked if Robredo could be removed as co-chairperson of the Inter-agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) if she reveals classified matters of the government that will endanger the security of the state.

“Needless to say, disclosing sensitive and classified information to unauthorized persons is betrayal of trust, and is therefore a proper and reasonable basis for revocation of one’s appointment,” Guevarra said.

President Duterte recently threatened to fire Robredo as co-chair of ICAD if she reveals classified matters of the government that will endanger the security of the state.

Duterte made the pronouncement when asked regarding Robredo’s meeting with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), community-based advocacy groups and U.S. Embassy officials to discuss the drug problem in the country.

“There’s a limit to that. I know that she’s a lawyer and she has other advisers... There are certain matters that should be kept with the government, that classified matters cannot be shared. Once [she does] that, she’s out, I would fire her. Because you jeopardized the security of the state,” Duterte said.

Duterte appointed Robredo and signed her appointment paper on October 31.

ICAD was formed on March 6, 2017, through Executive Order No. 15.

Under the EO, the PDEA heads the committee with 20 government agencies as members.

Robredo’s appointment came days after the President offered to have the Vice President as his drug czar and give her “full powers” to run the government’s war on drugs for six months.