Duterte eyes appointing retiring general into MWSS Board of Trustees

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 17)— President Rodrigo Duterte is eyeing retiring Army general Emmanuel Salamat as the newest member of the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) Board of Trustees.

Speaking at a Philippine Navy event Monday evening, Duterte said he will appoint Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Northern Luzon Command chief Emmanuel Salamat to the post currently held by another retired military officer Ricardo “Dick” Morales.

Kailan ka mag-retire (when will you retire), Sir? July? Next month,” Duterte said while looking for the military official in the audience.

Kung papayag si Dick Morales, si Dick i-move out ko sa MWSS, ikaw ang ilagay ko. Then I will look for the next general,” the chief executive added.

[Translation: If Dick Morales agrees, I will move Dick out of the MWSS, I’ll appoint you there. Then I will look for the next general.]

Morales has been appointed by Duterte into the agency’s Board of Trustees, following the sacking of another former military official Reynaldo Velasco. Morales is set to serve until the end of Velasco’s term on June 30.

Duterte, in the same speech, likewise addressed criticisms on his appointments for military men.

“Despite and in spite of criticisms of militarization, wala na nga civilian na kayo, hindi na nga kayo sinasaluduhan diyan. If you're back to normal, kunin ko na lang kayo, at least mautusan ko kayo,” the President said.

[Translation: Despite and inspite of criticisms on militarization, you’re already civilian, you’re not looked up to anymore. If you’re back to normal, I’ll just get you, at least I can give you tasks.]

The President had threatened to sack MWSS officials for allowing the recent water crisis in Manila and Rizal to happen.

Customers of Manila Water were surprised by an unannounced water interruption in March. For at least a week, its 1.2 million customers had either no water supply or low water pressure. The water concessionaire attributed the shortage to the decreasing water levels at the La Mesa reservoir in Quezon City due to the dry spell.