Duterte names new Comelec chair, commissioners

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 8) — President Rodrigo Duterte named the Commission on Elections' new chairperson and commissioners, the Malacañang announced on Tuesday.

Acting presidential spokesperson Martin Andanar confirmed the appointment of Saidamen Pangarungan as Comelec ad interim chairperson, and George Garcia and Aimee Neri as ad interim commissioners.

“The directive of the president is to ensure an honest, peaceful, credible, and free elections,” said Andanar in a public briefing.

Pangarungan was the former secretary of the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos and ex-governor of Lanao del Sur. He finished his law degree in 1976 at the San Beda College, where Duterte also studied.

Garcia is a veteran election lawyer who previously represented Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos in his 2016 VP electoral protest, while Neri was an undersecretary of the Department of Social Welfare and Development.