Mark Villar accepts Duterte’s offer to become new DPWH chief

Image from Mark Villar's official Facebook account
  • Son of former senator Manny Villar accepted Duterte’s offer to be DPWH chief
  • Cynthia Villar confirmed son’s acceptance, said it is because he has no record of corruption
  • Comelec to hold special elections for the congressional post left behind by Villar

MANILA, Philippines – Re-elected Las Piñas Rep. Mark Villar has announced his acceptance of incoming president Rodrigo Duterte’s offer to be the new Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) chief under his administration.

“I confirm that presumptive President Rody Duterte asked me to be his DPWH Secretary and after consulting with my family and constituents, I have decided to humbly accept his offer,” the Philippine Daily Inquirer quoted him as saying.

Villar is the son of former senator Manny Villar who was infamously embroiled in the “C-5 Scandal” which unfolded after he was accused of inserting an extra P200 million in the General Appropriations Act (GAA) to enable the road extension to reach through his real estate properties and subsequently raise their value.

Meanwhile, the younger Villar’s mother Sen. Cynthia Villar also confirmed her son’s acceptance of the appointment.

“Yes. Duterte talked to Mark yesterday and then he announced it after talking to him,” she said. “He said he wanted someone who is honest and has no record of corruption. That’s what he told Mark, he should be honest and should have no record of corruption.”

The senator also dismissed speculations Duterte appointed her son as a sign of goodwill between the newly-formed alliance of the Nacionalista Party and PDP-Laban.

“Even without that, we will still be supportive,” she said.

For its part, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said it would hold special elections to fill up the congressional post to be left behind by Villar.

“What I know is that the house leadership should declare a vacancy,”  Comelec spokesman James Jimenez pointed out.