President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday, June 1, led the oath-taking of officials from different national leagues and agencies, highlighting the importance of living simply as well as shunning corruption and abuses.
“Kayo, nandito tayo sa gobyerno, simple lang tayo,” the President said in a speech in Malacañan after administering the oath of office of the government officials.
He advised the officials to use public resources prudently.
The President said he won’t allow the people in government to live lavishly or use expensive cars.
“You use the ordinary… You buy the car that an ordinary manager — kasi manager, nandiyan ka naman sa gobyerno — ‘yan ang bilhin mo,” he said.
For instance, the President said he had an official who approved the purchase of fire trucks worth P18 million a piece, which he said were grossly overpriced.
Comparing it to Davao City’s 911, the President said they bought durable vehicles for six million through a bidding process.
The President also hit the use of sirens by government officials, noting he himself only use blinkers when travelling and opt to use sirens only during emergencies.
At the same time, he reiterated his warning to local government officials to stay away from the drug trade or else, they will face the consequences.
The President also mentioned the ongoing military operation in Marawi City, adding that he is saddened by the deaths of soldiers and policemen fighting in the frontline.
“Marami akong patay. I’m very sad. Marami akong sundalong patay, marami akong pulis na patay. Hindi lang nila nire-record kung ilan. Wala akong nakita na newspaper na, ‘the following died today,’” he said.
He said he is losing government forces everyday for as long as that war rages on and he is one with those who want an end to the Marawi crisis.
“The earlier we attain the equanimity of the community, the stability, I’d be the first to clamor for the lifting of martial law,” he said, adding that one does not declare martial law without consulting first the soldiers and the policemen on the situation in Mindanao.
“But for as long as the military says, ‘Sir, hindi pa talaga kaya.’ And it’s beyond 60 days, Congress must understand that I may need more time,” he said.
Among the prominent personalities who took their oath on Thursday were former senator Edgardo Angara as Special Envoy of the President to the European Union; Jose De Venecia Jr. as Special Envoy of the President for Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation; Dante Ang as Special Envoy of the President for International Public Relations; and Danilo Lim as chairman of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).
Mocha Uson also took her oath of office as assistant secretary of the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO).
Officials of the Vice Mayors’ League of the Philippines (VMLP), Provincial Board Members League of the Philippines (PBMLP), National Movement of Young Legislators (NMYL), League of Vice Governors of the Philippines (LVGP), and the Lady Local Legislators’ League of the Philippines Inc. (4L) also took their oath on Thursday.###PND