Budget chief Wendel Avisado resigns for health reasons

Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado tendered his resignation on Friday, August 13, and was accepted by President Rodrigo Duterte on the same day.

"President Duterte has accepted Secretary Wendel Avisado's resignation due to medical reasons," said Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque on Friday.

Undersecretary Tina Rose Marie Canda has been designated officer in charge of the budget department, he added.

Canda, a career official, has been OIC ever since Avisado started his two-week medical leave on August 2. Canda said she would be the OIC until Malacañang designates an acting secretary.

In his letter of resignation, Avisado said he needed to leave his post in order to tend to his health after a bout of COVID-19. He also mentioned past medical conditions, including one that required quadruple open heart bypass operation in 2007.

"The prognosis all point for me to take a rest from strenuous work and much pressure brought about by my current work so that I can fully recover and regain a much better health," said Avisado.

He managed to finish preparing the Duterte administration's last proposed budget – the proposed 2022 National Expenditure Program – before resigning.

Avisado, who was Davao City administrator during Duterte's mayorship and became his presidential assistant on Yolanda rehabilitation, is the President's second budget secretary. He replaced Benjamin Diokno who was appointed Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas governor. – with a report from Aika Rey/Rappler.com

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at pia.ranada@rappler.com.