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President Duterte said Thursday he is still looking for honest people who can lead government agencies without corruption, the reason why, he said, that he has not yet filled some government positions.
Speaking before a big crowd of women at the Convergence of Nanay Volunteers as Community Drugwatch in Clark Field, Angeles City, Pampanga, Duterte reiterated that there will be no room for corruption under his administration.
Present during the event were top provincial officials led by former President now Pampanga Rep. Gloria M. Arroyo as well as thousands of members of a volunteer group tapped as vanguards of peace and order in their communities.
The Chief Executive stressed that ridding the country of corruption was his campaign promise which he intends to keep.
“I complied on my promise: There will be no corruption, I will assure you there will be no corruption. ’Yung pera ninyo dadating talaga sa inyo,” the President said.
“Every Cabinet meeting nagwa-warning talaga ako,” he added, noting that he fired two deputy commissioners of the Bureau of Immigration – Al Argosino and Mike Robles – even if they are his brothers at the Lex Talionis Fraternitas Inc. at the San Beda College of Law.
Argosino and Robles were accused of extorting P50 million from Macau-based casino tycoon Jack Lam to facilitate the release of more than 1,000 Chinese nationals operating online gambling at the Fontana Leisure and Resort Casino in Clark.
“Pag sinabi ko malinis, malinis,” Duterte emphasized.
The President also said ridding the country of illegal drugs is “a sacred covenant.”
According to Duterte, his landslide win in the presidential elections last May was his destiny because God wants him to do something for the country, especially in combating illegal drugs. “Sa Mindanao, wala akong isang congressman, wala akong isang gubernador. And yet, I won,” he said.
“This has to be destiny. Walang iba. Destiny talaga. Ibig sabihin utos ng Diyos. Sabi ko na may talagang pinapagawa ang Diyos sa iyo,” he added.
Duterte noted that illegal drug users have now hit 900,000 plus and may even breach the one million mark by the end of the year. This, he said, was apart from the three million drug addicts during the time of former Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency chief Dionisio Santiago.
“We cannot build a nation over the bones of our countrymen. But somebody, somehow must solve the problem,” Duterte said. (Elena L. Aben)