PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday expressed disappointment over the Commission on Appointments removal of Regina Lopez as secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
Duterte said that there are things that he cannot control but conceded that is how democracy works.
“It’s a pity about Gina,” he said in Filipino in a speech before orthopedic surgeons in Davao City. “I really like her passion. But you know how it is. This is democracy.’’ He also inferred heavy lobbying.
“I can’t control everything. I want to but I share powers. And that is the process of checks and balances,” he added. “The President appoints, but the appointee undergoes the scrutiny of the Commission on Appointments.”
Lopez was rejected by a vote of 16-8 by secret voting.
Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella, meanwhile, said that the stay order issued by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea on Lopez’s orders for affected mining companies to pay more than P2 million per hectare of land, will continue until Duterte appoints a new environment chief.