Critics: Roxas appointment is traditional politics

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile said the appointment "only shows the depth of  the President’s trust and confidence in Sec. Roxas." This was a fact that Aquino stressed when he announced the appointments of Roxas and of Cavite Representative Joseph Emilio Abaya as Transportation secretary.

"To follow in Jesse’s footsteps is certainly not an easy task, and to say that Mar has 'big shoes to fill' would be an understatement," he said. Enrile said, however, that he believes Roxas can do the job and that the best way to celebrate Robredo's legacy is to support his replacement.

Senator Franklin Drilon, senior member of the LP at the Senate, meanwhile, said Aquino and Roxas share the same vision, "which is crucial in putting forward the reforms that the administration has envisioned for the local government and which the late Secretary Jesse Robredo had started."

Drilon also praised Abaya, who chairs the House appropriations committee, for his "experience and the kind of leadership he has shown."

Senator Teofisto Guingona III, also a Liberal, said Roxas has the experience in government service needed to run the DILG. Aside from serving in both Houses of Congress, Roxas has headed the Department of Trade and Industry and the DOTC. "Secretary Roxas espouses similar virtues and principles which include good governance and transparency in govt transactions," he said.

"There couldn't have been a worthier replacement to Jesse Robredo," he said.

Senator Francis Pangilinan, also from LP, welcomed the appointments too. "Continuity of policy is crucial as the Aquino administration pushes for necessary, urgent reforms, and we know that these two fine public servants will take to the task as always," he said on Twitter.

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