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Duterte names special envoy to Kuwait

MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte has appointed a special envoy to Kuwait as the Philippines and the Gulf state mend ties.

Duterte appointed Presidential Adviser for OFW Concerns Abdullah Mama-o as his special envoy to Kuwait. He will hold the post from May 1 to Oct. 31, 2018.

Mama-o was among the government officials sent by Duterte to Kuwait earlier this month to finalize the deal for the protection of OFWs in the Gulf state.

The deal’s signing earlier hit a snag after the two countries figured in the diplomatic row following the Philippine embassy’s rescue missions for distressed Filipino workers.

Kuwait viewed the rescue operations as a violation of its sovereignty. This prompted Kuwait to expel Philippine Ambassador to Kuwait Renato Villa, arrest four Filipino drivers who participated in the operations, and order the arrest of three Filipino diplomats.

The Philippines and Kuwait have since patched things up and signed the agreement.

Meanwhile, Duterte also appointed lawyer Karen Jimeno as undersecretary for disaster resiliency under the Presidential Management Staff, Office of the President.

Prior to her appointment to PMS, Jimeno served as undersecretary for legal affairs and priority projects of the Department of Public Works and Highways.

Duterte also appointed Benjamin Escandor Palmero as member of the board of directors of the Philippine National Oil Company – Renewables Corporation.

Palmero shall serve the unexpired term of Ashary Maongco until June 30, 2018.

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