19 February 2017

Palace calls on Filipinos to contribute to nation building
Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella emphasized on Sunday the need for Filipinos to do their part in nation building.

“Patuloy po tayo sa paggawa and`let’s bear in mind what the President has said, ‘Let us build a nation that’s worthy of Filipinos and let’s continue to mold Filipinos that’s worthy of the nation’,” Abella said in a radio interview over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan on Sunday.

In a speech on Saturday during the PMA Alumni Homecoming, President Rodrigo Duterte said his government is working hard to uplift the living conditions of Filipinos.

Duterte noted that if Filipinos can work together and agree, they could continue to build together a nation that is worthy of the Filipino people.

“Hindi po madali ang nation-building considering the fact that he inherited this situation right now na tayo rin naman ang gumawa,” Abella added.

Also during the same interview, Abella clarified that the President was consistent with his previous statements that he came from a poor family.

The President has not changed his statement on the issue, Abella said noting he was just explaining of how the Dutertes, who were migrants to Mindanao, progressed as a family.

Abella explained that when the Duterte family arrived in Mindanao during the President’s younger years, they did not live in luxury and they had no lavish lifestyle because they were not wealthy.

“So they really had nothing — not naman nothing but meron naman silang sweldo and all that but they were government employees ‘no, so there was nothing there,” Abella said.

”Except that during — noong nakapag-impok na ‘yung magulang niya, when he died, the father died meron siyang iniwang inheritance,” he added.

Asked if President Duterte will release the bank history of his BPI account, Abella said it is the President’s call.

The Palace official also reacted to the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) “Walk for Life” rally condemning the rampant killings and attempts to revive the death penalty.

He said the President will always protect the freedom of expression and the recent CBCP’s event is just one of them.

“That’s part of the democratic dynamic,” he said.###PND