MANILA, Philippines – Zenaida Angping, a longtime aide of the Romualdez-Marcos clan, has exited as head of the Presidential Management Staff (PMS), the Palace said in a short statement on Friday, December 2.
After rumors spread on social media that Angping had resigned, the Palace said in a short statement: “Presidential Management Staff (PMS) Secretary Naida Angping has asked to take some personal time for herself and her family, and the President agreed.”
A source familiar with Palace movements said the terse statement was referring to a resignation.
Malacañang has not responded to follow-up questions to their statement on Angping.
She would be the second member of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr’s inner circle to quit or step away from their post barely five months into his presidency. Executive Secretary Vic Rodriguez resigned in September, when the Palace said he’d become Presidential Chief of Staff. His replacement, former chief justice Lucas Bersamin, would later tell media that Rodriguez would not get a new post and that he was no longer part of the administration.
Both resignations were preceded by unsavory reports about them.
Angping’s husband was alleged to have been caught harassing a hotel staff during the President’s trip to Bangkok for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit last month. Rodriguez, on the other hand, got embroiled in questionable appointments and decisions which pro-Marcos vloggers had exposed.
Most prominent of Rodriguez’ controversies was the issuance of a Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) importation memo that the Palace would later rescind and deny.
Apart from Angping and Rodriguez, those who have resigned from the Marcos government include former press secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles and former Commission on Audit chief Jose Calida.
Angping, former Manila representative, started her term on June 30, or the same day President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. was sworn into office.
The PMS plays a critical role in providing staff support for the President to aid him in making decisions and crafting policies with the Cabinet and advisory bodies. This role has evolved over the years to include managing the overall development process. It also facilitates and organizes events for the President and Malacañang.
Angping’s ties to the Marcos family run deep. She was once the aide of the late Benjamin “Kokoy” Romualdez, the father of House Speaker Martin Romualdez. Kokoy is also the brother of Imelda Marcos, the former first lady and mother of the President.
She also helped manage Marcos Jr’s 2022 presidential run, acting as disbursing officer of the campaign, the President himself said in a leaked video of his speech at his victory party.
Angping was also part of the Marcos transition team that picked nominees for the President to appoint.
When they announced Angping’s appointment, the Marcos team hyped her experience as an aide to the older Romualdez – from Leyte to his diplomatic posts.
But all has not been smooth with Angping as PMS chief. Months into the new Marcos administration, there was talk within Malacañang that the former Manila representative was frequently absent.
And then a few weeks ago, her husband, former Manila representative Harry Angping, was supposedly caught harassing a staff of a Bangkok hotel where the President’s party was billeted for the APEC Summit.
The Palace refused to comment on the reports, and a high-level official on background denied that Mr. Angping was arrested. Thai police denied the arrest as well.
Angping was however absent from PR001, the presidential plane that brought the official APEC delegation back to Manila. Palace sources said Angping’s luggage was offloaded from the plane in the hours leading up to its departure. – Rappler.com