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Duterte prods village chiefs to do their jobs

By ARGYLL CYRUS GEDUCOS

President Duterte tapped the country’s newly elected barangay captains to their part in protecting the Filipinos from illegal drugs and terrorism.

Duterte made the statement as he swore in the new village leaders in the Zamboanga Peninsula in Molave, Zamboanga Del Sur.

In his Tuesday evening speech, Duterte renewed his warning that charges would be filed against incompetent village chiefs.

“Trabaho kayo. Bigyan ko kayo ng armas. But I want terrorism and drugs. I will have an audit. And if you are not at par, I will file charges against you for incompetence. Ayaw kong gawain ‘yan,” said Duterte.

“You have to defend the country. You protect the people of the Republic of the Philippines. ‘Yan ang trabaho ko, trabaho ninyo, trabaho nating lahat. I expect you to, of course, give your best,” he added.

The Chief Executive raised anew the plan of arming barangay officials. He, however, said he would have to consult with the members of the Cabinet first.

“I will consult the Cabinet pero ang aking proposal, no heavy firearm. Shotgun lang,” he said.

Duterte has been calling barangay officials to support the government as his administration confronts the scourge of illegal drugs, corruption, and criminality.

“It’s not a threat, it’s just an advice. I am pleading that you are with the government now kindly be one, or be responsible for your mandates sa taong-lungsod,” he earlier addressed the village chiefs of Central Visayas.

Earlier this week, Duterte put the barangay officials to task when he asked them to help in carrying out his anti-tambay directive by accosting street idlers, particularly minors but deliver the minors who will be taken into custody back to their parents immediately the following morning.

“That is the obligation of the police, the barangay chairpersons. ‘Pag minors, damputin mo talaga,” he said.

“Do your duty. You are the leaders of your barangays. If you cannot do it, kung mataas ang crime rate niyo, then I will charge you with neglect,” he added.

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