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Five hundred and ninety-seven. That's how many Palace appointees the bicameral Commission on Appointments (CA) was able to confirm during the first regular session of the 19th Congress, said Surigao del Sur 2nd district Rep. Johnny Pimentel, CA assistant minority leader. The 597 covered presidential nominations and ad interim appointments. “All told, the CA gave its consent to the appointments of 21 Cabinet secretaries, five constitutional commissioners, 119 foreign service officers, 451 military officers, and a member of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC),” Pimentel said. MalacaƱang on Sunday, June 4, bared a fresh batch of presidential appointees that included Mersole Mellejor, as Ambassador to Nigeria, with concurrent jurisdiction over the Benin, Burkina Faso, and Cameroon, and Raquel Solano, as Chief of Mission, Class II. The appointments of the two diplomats will be sent to the CA for screening and confirmation. On Monday night, June 5, President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. finally named full-time heads of the Department of Health (DOH) and the Department of National Defense (DND) in Ted Herbosa and Gibo Teodoro, respectively. It remains to be seen if Marcos will name a full-time secretary of the Department of Agriculture (DA), which he currently heads. Under the 1987 Constitution, the following presidential appointees are subject to CA confirmation: heads of executive departments; ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls; officers of the Armed Forces from the rank of colonel or naval captain; regular members of the JBC; chairpersons and commissioners of the Civil Service Commission (CSC), Commission on Elections (Comelec), and the Commission on Audit (COA). The first regular session lasted from July 25, 2022 to May 31, 2023.

Source: Manila Bulletin (https://mb.com.ph/2023/6/6/ca-confirms-597-palace-appointees-during-1st-regular-session)