Joel Villanueva adopts ‘TESDA Man’ nickname, says, ‘TESDA owes me for promotions’

Former Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Secretary Joel Villanueva had an interview on ANC’s Headstart on Mon, Mar 7 and he discussed his plans if he gets elected as senator.

To be clear: Villanueva quit his post as TESDA chief last year because he was running for senator this year.

At some point, Headstart host Karen Davila asked Villanueva about the fact that he has adopted the nickname, “TESDA Man,” in his Senate campaign.

At the 6:16 mark of the video clip, Davila says, “Now, all these posters of Joel Villanueva that I see when I’m traveling…anywhere in Luzon. I see, ‘Joel Villanueva, TESDA Man.’ Pero, ginagamit mo ba ang pondo ng TESDA for those posters (But are you using TESDA funds for those posters)?”

Villanueva smiled before he said, “Never. I think TESDA owes me sa pagpo-promote ng ating ahensiya eh, kasi wala tayong, katulad dati, big deal na may endorsers ang TESDA, gumagamit ng pondo ang TESDA (Never. I think TESDA owes me for promoting the agency because we [don’t have funds for that], not like before where it was a big deal that TESDA got endorsers and TESDA funds were used for that).”

By “endorsers,” Villanueva was referring to the appearance of Sarah Geronimo in TESDA ads during the time of another TESDA chief, Augusto “Boboy” Syjuco Jr.

Villanueva went on to say that the use of endorsers in the past got TESDA into trouble. “Anong nangyari sa TESDA? Napunta, nasadlak tayo sa madaming kaso. Wala po ni singkong duling na ginastos ang ating ahensiya sa TESDA, kasi po Ma’am, we’ve learned our lessons (What happened to TESDA then? It got embroiled in a lot of cases. TESDA didn’t spend even five centavos on promotions because, Ma’am, we have learned our lessons).”

Villanueva went on to point out that during his stint as TESDA chief, he promoted the agency without incurring addional expenses and that his efforts yielded great results.

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