News Release

President Duterte to businessmen: PHL fundamentally peaceful

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte interacts with the delegates of the Davao Investment Conference 2017 at the SMX Convention Center in Davao abinet and officers of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. during the Davao Investment Conference 2017 at the SMX Convention Center in Davao City on July 21, 2017. JOEY DALUMPINES/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

DAVAO CITY — President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday, July 21, assured businessmen that the Philippines is fundamentally peaceful.

“I think I’d like to now address myself to the businessmen and the stakeholders here, wherever endeavor you are in,” President Duterte said in his speech at the Davao Investment Conference 2017 held at the SMX Convention Center here.
“Fundamentally it’s peaceful. The fight in Marawi would soon be over,” the President assured.

Meanwhile, President Duterte wants errant government workers who were named through his complaint hotline 8888 to kneel before the public and vow not to repeat their mistakes.

Duterte said he would want to talk to the errant government employees in Malacañan.

“You there, you resign or get out from your authority if you cannot get out of government service or I resign,” he said.

“But you have to kneel down before the public, and you have to promise the people that we are serving that you have to improve your service,” he added.

Duterte also reiterated his call to the public to assert their rights and complain government employees who were giving them a hard time.

“Report to me the name. Name the employee publicly. I will protect you,” he said.

The President however asked the public to also be patient as he is only one year in office, adding that there is still much work to be done.

In a media interview following the investment conference, meanwhile, President Duterte said consultants of the National Democratic Front who were released by the government for the peace negotiations should surrender or be hunted down by government forces.

“They’ll have to surrender or we will hunt them down. I’m sorry. Please do not resist because magkagulo tayo niyan,” Duterte said.

“If you resist with a firearm or with violence there, do not resist, surrender, because ang usapan natin i-release kayo conditionally. So that you can participate in the talks and make it successful because your presence is needed… But since there are no more talks, stick to the agreement and surrender,” he said.

The government has stopped its backchannel talks with the NPA-CPP-NDF, following attacks on government forces.###PND