Duterte names new SBMA chair to replace Martin Diño

MANILA, Philippines (3rd UPDATE) – President Rodrigo Duterte named Wilma Eisma as the new chairperson of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA), replacing his ally Martin Diño. 

Eisma will also continue serving as SBMA administrator, a post she has held since January this year.

Duterte signed Eisma's appointment paper on Monday, September 25.

Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said Eisma took her oath of office on Tuesday morning, September 26, at the Office of the Senior Deputy Executive Secretary.

A source in the SBMA described Eisma as a protégé of Senator Richard Gordon. She worked as Gordon's executive assistant and legal staff member when the senator served as SBMA chairman and administrator from 1992 to 1998.

It was Gordon who reportedly pushed for Eisma's appointment, first as administrator.

Diño, meanwhile, had been appointed to the SBMA in September 2016. He was a presidential candidate in the 2016 elections but withdrew and nominated then Davao City mayor Duterte as the substitute standard-bearer of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).

Diño was former chairman of the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) as well. He is also the father of actress Liza Diño, the chairperson of the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP). – Rappler.com