Speech of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte during the oath taking of newly-appointed generals and flag officers
Rizal Hall, Malacañang
23 August 2016
This is really not part of the program. Pagkatapos mag-alis lang ako parang, umalis lang ako, parang wala. So as usual, same downstairs. I’d like to congratulate the Chief of Staff, sir, and the officers—newly promoted in the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

We have this burden of protecting the country and usually the Commander-in-Chief is elected by the people for in this country believe that those who will govern will be elected. And so, the function of the police in keeping order or the power to protect the integrity of the country, behooves upon my shoulder representing the people.

In the Philippines we have a little bit of, I would say, disorder. In a sense that, some of the areas of governance are really dysfunctional. And for one, what prompted or impelled me to run was the corruption that was—even by government.

A lot of the bureaucracy until now. Despite of my warning, ‘di matanggal-tanggal and that prompted me to issue an order that I would consider all appointees of the President—no, hindi naman corrupt, yung—huwag naman yung akin, dumaan ‘yan sa crucible of, critical—

Itong ‘yung and even those others who are already in government at my behest for I was friendly with the government of Arroyo and of Aquino. I supported Aquino during the last presidential election before me. Yun ang nangyari pero mahirap pa rin anuhin ang bayan natin.

Before I start, I’ve been egging Secretary Ben Diokno to really see to it that by December, all of the salaries of the soldiers would have been doubled already, nauna kayo. And you can rest assure I said that I visited your medical center and gave the guys there almost 500 million, half a billion pesos for its improvement.

I was really aghast to learn that the hospital does not have any MRI and the Gamma rays and all of these things. At binigay ‘yan para sa mga tao natin, those who are under your command would have a better chance of making it through during their stint with the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

Eh ako naman, utusan lang ng gobyerno and I’m here to see to it that you are comfortable and that you would need anything, just tell me. I’ve been insistent with the COA that we will not follow the rule of the last lowest bid. You must know ‘yang lowest bid the ‘yan is the source of all product—corruption sa gobyerno, maniwala kayo.

I’ve been with government as mayor for 22, 23 years sa Davao, congressman ako.

When I was a prosecutor for the— hindi pa ito Ombudsman noon, with the predecessor was the tanod bayan. The Office of the Tanod Bayan, I was one of the two special prosecutor doing trial work everywhere. Ang hindi mahinto-hinto, itong corruption so it would be an unrelenting fight until the end of my term and maybe itong droga.

But let me be very clear about drugs. I distributed sometime ago, I don’t know if you received it all. ‘Yung kay Ioan—cartel about the sad history of South America. And if you read it, you would know that 3 to 7 years, if it not for the interdiction that’s going on, I think it would end up like, like the failed states in—of course, Colombia has recovered but took them several decades to do it at the expense of the lives and the many wasted generations before them.
So ako, I’ll not talk any lengthy speech but to say that, we will see to it that we hand over to the next generation of Filipinos the government that is relatively drug free and I hope that we’d finally be able to hurdle the corruption, the culture of corruption that is really prevalent. It’s really pulling us down so there would be an ongoing purge and sadly, many will be unhappy. But for the more than so many million Filipinos, I’m sure that you’ll be happy what we in government are doing.

And again, my congratulations. I give you my snappy salute and we will work together. You will have all the things, the best that we can afford.

Nandito naman si—ang problema kahapon, we were discussing of who is going to be sent to–mukhang apurado na ang ano, who’s the next ambassador? Eh nagtuturuan kami, tinuro— sinong tumuro sa ‘yo doon? Somebody kung ikaw. Hindi ako ah. Somebody said, “‘Yan o”. Sabi ko, “O, tama na yan”. Sabi niya: “Kararating ko lang,… Ambassador?” But wala, pagka wala akong ibang makuha, then we’ll just have to scout for a new Defense Secretary, marami naman diyan eh. (applause)

I hope to get one. Pero pag hindi ito pumayag, I’ll tell you now. Kasi si Gibo, I offered to help him during the last election. “Tatakbo ka ba? Kasi kung tatakbo ka, susuporta ako sa iyo.”

He was my lawyer long before, he was still a young lawyer sa ano. Eh ayaw niya, I was just shooting the breeze with somebody last night and I said, it might be good to—I don’t know. Dumating na yan sa kanya by this time but I hope he does accept because if not, goodbye na si Lorenzana. (laughter).

But marami naman dito. Mamili na lang ako. You’re all good at okay na tayo. As a country, okay na tayo. Huwag kayong mag-alala. Meron lang, if I can hack this—just be patient and be understanding, you know violence is not really a sign of—I’m a President, my duty is to seek peace, not to wage war, that is not my primary duty, that is not the duty of a president. If you can have peace in this—if I can have a working arrangement with the Left, Communist Party of the Philippines, and itong si Misuari pati si Murad would agree, I think we will have a good chance of your—the future of your children are really brighter than what it is now.

Maraming salamat po. (applause)