24 February 2012

PNoy swears in Garcia as SBMA chairman-administrator

Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) Chairman Roberto Garcia finally took his oath of office as chairman and administrator of the agency before President Benigno Aquino III, ending speculations that a new Palace appointee would take over the reins of the SBMA.

Garcia was sworn in, along with other new Palace appointees, on Monday in MalacaƱang.

He said that his appointment as SBMA Chairman and Administrator in effect unified both positions in conformance with the SBMA charter.

Garcia was originally appointed by President Aquino as chairman of the SBMA board of directors in April 2011. In November 2011, he was signed in as SBMA administrator. His term as chairman and administrator will end on June 30, 2016.

Garcia’s oath-taking on Monday was belatedly challenged by some reports saying that Michael Ted ‘Mike’ Macapagal had been appointed as SBMA administrator by President Aquino effective February 27.

A news report also said that Macapagal’s appointment was backed by political and business leaders in Olongapo City, including Aurelio Pineda and Ramon del Rosario, president and vice president, respectively, of the Metro Olongapo Chamber of Commerce, Inc.

However, both had since issued a written statement to disclaim their reported role in the “alleged endorsement of an aspirant to the SBMA.”

Garcia stressed that he works at the pleasure of the President. “I am ready to step down anytime if the President says so because the ultimate decision is the decision of the President,” Garcia said. (RFD/MPD-SBMA)

President Benigo Aquino III congratulates SBMA chairman and administrator Roberto V. Garcia after the latter’s oath-taking at the Rizal Ceremonial Hall in MalacaƱang last Monday. With Garcia is his wife, the former Maribi Mapa.