By SHERWIN DE VERA
BAGUIO CITY – Malacañang has appointed Attorney Raul Lambino as the new Presidential Adviser for Northern Luzon on June 6. The office is directly under the President and equivalent to the rank of a cabinet member.
Prior to this, the Duterte administration tasked him to head the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) in July last year. He is with PDP-Laban, currently the ruling party’s vice president for international affairs.
Executive Order No. 44, issued by former president and now Pampangga Representative Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (GMA) in October 2001, covers the creation and function of the office. In particular, the issuance mandates Lambino to provide advice to the president on the socio-economic development of the region.
Lambino served as spokesperson and defense counsel for GMA during her hospital arrest for poll fraud. He also received wide criticism when he argued against the call for former Chief Justice Renato Corona to inhibit in the cases filed against Arroyo.
Lambino gained national prominence in 2006 as spokesperson of Sigaw ng Bayan, the group that pushed for Constitutional amendments through people’s initiative. The Arroyo administration likewise appointed him twice in committees tasked to review and recommend changes in the Constitution. # nordis.net