ERNESTO M. Pernia on Friday resigned as President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s Socioeconomic Planning chief, citing personal reasons and “differences in development philosophy” with some fellow Cabinet members.
The President had accepted Mr. Pernia’s resignation and named Finance Undersecretary Karl Kendrick T. Chua as acting secretary of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Executive Secretary Salvador S. Medialdea said in a mobile-phone message.
“After reflection during Holy Week and consultations with my family and close colleagues, I have decided to resign from my post as secretary of Socioeconomic Planning,” Mr. Pernia said in a statement.
“This is due partly to personal reasons and partly to differences in development philosophy with a few of my fellow Cabinet members,” he added.
Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez in a separate statement said the President’s economic team had not been consulted about Mr. Pernia’s decision to step down.
Mr. Pernia thanked the President for entrusting him with the post as well as his colleagues at the NEDA for the “trust and confidence in my leadership.”
“I would like to thank the President for appointing me to the position,” he said. “It has been an honor and privilege to have served the country under his administration for the past nearly four years.”
“I leave NEDA knowing that we have initiated and implemented meaningful changes that will help the country overcome these challenging times and on to a higher growth trajectory,” Mr. Pernia said.
Mr. Pernia recently joined the government’s Inter-Agency Task Force against the novel coronavirus in crafting an economic recovery plan.
He was appointed NEDA chief at the start of Mr. Duterte’s presidency in July 2016.
Mr. Pernia and other officials of the agency did not immediately reply to mobile-phone messages seeking comments. — Beatrice M. Laforga