(Eagle News) — Former Senator Gringo Honasan today formally started his new duty as Secretary of the Department of Information and Communication Technology after taking his oath of office before President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday.
He replaced former DICT officer-in-charge Eliseo Rio who will go back to being an undersecretary of the department , this time for operations. Rio had served as Undersectary for Special Concerns before he was tasked to the DICT’s OIC.
In his first press conference as DICT chief on Tuesday, July 2, Honasan said he would continue Rio’s initiatives at the department.
“To allay fears of continuity, sustainability, and predictability we have here Undersecretary Eliseo Rio, whose programs and initiatives which we are going to continue,” Honasan said.
Rio described Honasan’s entry in the DICT as a “welcome development.”
“What the department really needs is his management expertise,” he said.
Honasan had already attended his first cabinet meeting for the Duterte administration on Monday after his oath-taking, according to Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea.
He is the third chief of the three-year old Department.
Under Rio’s watch, DICT department started the search for a third player in the telecommunications industry to break the monopoly of PLDT Inc. and Globe Telecom Inc. He also started the common tower initiative to improve connectivity, and also supervised the implementation of the Free Wi-Fi in all Public Places law.
On Tuesday, Honasan, together with outgoing Secretary Rio, inaugurated a new public wifi access point at the Quirino Memorial Medical Center in Quezon City.
President Duterte signed Honasan’s appointment as DICT Secretary in November last year.