By Genalyn Kabiling
President Duterte has urged elected government officials to strive to complete their projects within their term and without any taint of corruption.
At a recent assembly of vice governors at the Palace, the President said they should not leave their projects unfinished, adding they must serve their constituents with the “highest degree of integrity, honesty, and good faith.”
“Kailangan ‘yang lahat ng projects matatapos ninyo [You must complete all your projects],” Duterte said during the oath-taking ceremony of League of Vice Governors of the Philippines at the Palace last week.
“Huwag kayong mag-iwan ng project na hindi matapos kasi kagaya ninyo, magtakbo kayo ng cong — congressman, may ma-realign ‘yan eh. Some of you will go to Congress, others will become eventually the governors [Don’t leave projects incomplete because you might run for congressman. They may be realigned. Some of you will go to Congress, others will become eventually the governors],” he added.
Duterte has reminded the local government officials to avoid corruption, saying the public deserves service with integrity and efficiency.
He said he met some governors and congressmen who used to drive cheap cars but now ride fancy sports utility vehicles and own bigger houses.
“Huwag mo sabihin na magkapera ka ganon ang suweldo ng congressman? [Don’t tell me you’ve become richer from a congressman’s salary],” he said.
“Kaya if there is any one thing really that I’d like to impart to you, very important, is ‘yang huwag kang — iwasan mo talaga ‘yang issue ng corruption [avoid the issue of corruption]. Maybe, just maybe that was the same thing that carried me to the presidency,” he added.
In his speech, the President asked the vice governors to become instrumental in making the provincial governments more responsive to the needs of the people.
He said they should advance local policies that will promote social justice, protect the environment, conserve resources, ensure food security, and espouse reforms beneficial to the people.
“I am hopeful that as you take the helm of your organization, you will not just uphold good governance, transparency and accountability, but also embody responsive leadership in effecting changes for local and national development,” he said.
“Become a partner of the national government in its efforts to intensify our fight against illegal drugs, criminality, red tape, terrorism and corruption,” he added.