MANILA - Two former Social Welfare officials claimed on Wednesday that they were "unceremoniously" fired by President Rodrigo Duterte.
Former undersecretaries Maria Lourdes Turalde-Jarabe and Mae Ancheta-Templa said they were not even given any reasons why they were sacked.
"It would have been better if we were talked to, and they told us ahead of time so we had time to prepare. It was unceremoniously done. We were like caught flatfooted," Jarabe told ANC.
"Personally, I expected professionalism so that there would be a transition," added Templa, who was the agency's focal person in Mindanao.
Aside from Jarabe and Templa, former undersecretary Hope Hervilla was also fired by Duterte. All of them were seen as Left-leaning officials.
But Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea had already said being Left-leaning is not the reason behind their firing and explained that "[It was for the] formation of a good team."
Both Jarabe and Templa, meanwhile, denied claims in a letter supposedly recommending their sacking to the President, saying they have been allegedly "actively organizing with the Left."
They said they were just doing their jobs, talking to regional directors, consulting various stakeholders, and talking to the grassroots community.
"I practice progressive, critical, social work. And I have to deal with the grassroots community, and peoples organizations from vulnerable sectors," said Templa.
Jarabe also denied the accusation in the letter that he was "underperforming," as her former superiors have have evaluated her as "satisfactory."