Legacy to Filipinos? Just look around you, Duterte says

Published July 1, 2021, 6:56 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

President Duterte is not inclined to brag about his legacy to the nation when he makes his final State of the Nation Address (SONA) later this month.

President Rodrigo Duterte (File photo/Malacañang)

According to the President, all the people needed to do is look around to see how the country has developed under his watch.

Besides, Duterte admitted that the government projects, including the infrastructure development, have been funded by the people, not him.

“Nothing. All I want the people is to just look around. Ito, ‘yong ganito (Like this one),” Duterte said during the inauguration of the Light Rail Transit-Line 2 east extension project in Antipolo City Thursday, July 1, when asked about the legacy of his administration.

“Hindi ko ipagyabang. Unang-una, hindi ko ito pera (I won’t boast. First of all, it’s not my money). That’s not my money. All I would just say is that we built the — and that’s all,” he said.

The President is expected to deliver his sixth and final SONA before the two houses of Congress on July 26. The annual speech is used to highlight the administration’s achievements, seek swift passage of priority bills, as well as present plans for the coming year.

Duterte said he could enumerate the government’s projects but won’t attribute any “miracle” to him. Instead, he gave credit to the hardworking officials on the ground like Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade and Public Works and Highways Secretary Mark Villar.

“I will not crow about it in public because sabihin ng mga tao, ‘Hindi mo pera ‘yan. Bakit ka sige payabang diyan?’ (people might say ‘It’s not your money so why boast about it?). Of course, the industry of those who were really on the ground,” he said.

“Pero ako (But) I will not — I will just mention what were the projects completed without necessarily attributing the miracle to me,” he said.

Duterte, who will end his six-year presidency next year, maintained that he was just a worker of government.

“Nagtrabaho lang ako. So wala akong dapat ipagyabang (I am just working so I have nothing to brag about),” he said.

Duterte said he would probably mention the completion of certain projects and afterwards, he would “shut up.” “It’s not my style to banner,” he quipped.

Before taking pride of the administration’s programs, he explained that he usually checks first if a certain project is a personal initiative.

“Iniisip ko muna, ito ba akin personal? Puwede ko bang ipagyabang? Ah kung akin, okay (I think it over. Is it personal project? Can I boast about it? If it’s mine, then okay),” he said.

“Pero kung mga ganito, ito ba’y pera ko? Ako ba’y nagpagod dito? Ako ba ‘yong nasa ground? Sila. So sila ang dapat (But if projects like this, is this my money? Did I worked hard on it? Was I on the ground? It’s them. So they should), the workers of government, especially those who are appointed and who have worked so well, iyon ang dapat. The credit should go to them,” he added.