Duterte pitches for common good at PMA homecoming, 18 Feb. 2017

BAGUIO CITY – President Rodrigo Duterte said Saturday that his administration continues to work to uplift the living conditions of Filipinos as he promised to uphold the common good.

In a speech during the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Alumni Homecoming 2017 here in Fort Del Pilar, the President said as an immigrant from Visayas to Mindanao, he and his family hoped for a better life in the so-called ‘Land of Promise.’

But now, it is threatened by climate change caused by man-made disasters like extractive industries, he lamented.

“The rest of the nation is threatened by the widening gap between the rich and the poor, crime, corruption, criminality, and illegal drugs,” Duterte said.

“Government must now deliver goods and services to really serve the people, not just the interest of the few. In the past, our government was on the verge of failure because those who were in the position to help deliberately made wrong decisions which favored only themselves,” he added.

As part of his commitment during his first State of the Nation Address, he said his administration is working to ensure that basic human services are available to all, that there is food and medicine, water and sanitation, shelter, public safety, education, and economic opportunities.

The President vowed to always uphold the sanctity of the common good as the highest goal that always benefits the next generation of Filipinos.

Attaining peace and order is paramount, he said, noting if there is peace and order, businesses and everything else will follow like Davao City where he was mayor for more than 20 years.

Duterte said what happened in Davao City can happen nationwide with the support of the public especially the military, who can help provide the protection of communities. There are major threats confronting the nation today, one is illegal drugs and the other is Islamic extremism, he said.

The President noted that the PMA, with the support of the AFP, was given instruction to wage war against illegal drugs which has already made significant inroads.

In the government’s fight against terrorism, the President said Isnilon Hapilon, the overall leader of the ISIS in the Philippines, has been severely wounded in an encounter with the military. To secure Mindanao, Duterte said he has directed the AFP and PNP to continuously contain the ISIS threat by intensifying operations against them.

Meanwhile, he said righteousness and discipline are the foundation of a nation, adding he desires a Philippines that is prosperous and inhabited by peaceful, law-abiding citizens.

“That is why I appreciate the PMA. You have the template of discipline and civility. I ask that you continue this tradition and thank you for inviting me to be part of you,” he said.

“Let us together build a nation worthy of the Filipinos; Filipinos worthy of their nation; Pilipinong nararapat sa Pilipinas; Pilipinas na nararapat sa Pilipino; Nasud nga angay sa Pilipino, Pilipinong angay sa Pilipinas.” ###PND