23 July 2016

PRRD to Philippine Army 6th Infantry Division: “We are in safe hands”
DATU ODIN SANSUAT, MAGUINDANAO — President Rodrigo R. Duterte on Friday recognized that fighting illegal drugs is a daunting and tough task with the “big fish” getting harder to catch now in the midst of government efforts to rid the nation of the drug menace.

Speaking before the soldiers of the 6th Infantry Division at Camp Siongco in this municipality, President Duterte acknowledged that drug syndicates have gone high-tech, often operating from outside the country using cyberspace as a means to communicate with lieutenants around the globe.

He said the presence of the government is strongly felt through the military, adding that “I would like to assure you that I am just more than satisfied to go home knowing that all of us are doing everything we can for the nation.”

The President commended elements of the Army and the entire Armed Forces for their successful campaigns in the region. But he said the country right now is fighting a different kind of war—the war against illegal drugs which is being fought both by conventional and technological means.

On the matter of peace in the region, PRRD praised Moro Islamic Liberation Front Chairman Alhaj Murad for choosing to explore peace talks with the government. The President said he is willing to give the Bangsamoro Basic Law a chance, but minus the Constitutional issues. He believes Congress must be involved in the process.

Before he left Maguindanao, President Duterte encouraged everyone to do his job well as it is all about a collective sense of accomplishment. “Trabaho tayo pati ako (let’s all get down to work) so I will take care of you and protect you.” (PND)

Pres. Duterte to bring food, peace, and economic viability to Mindanao
President Rodrigo Duterte graced the symbolic launching of the first commercial biomass power plant in Buluan, Maguindanao. To be built by Green Earth EnerSource Corporation, the renewable energy plant will have an installed capacity of 4.5 megawatts. This would ensure enough electricity for the municipality, and generate local employment.

Speaking before local officials and officers and employees of Green Earth, President Duterte reiterated his plan to prioritize the economic development of Mindanao, especially the provinces of Maguindanao and Sultan Kudarat.

“Alam mo kasi ang priority ko ang itong Maguindanao pati Sultan Kudarat. You know why? Sa statistics, you have the highest incidence of hunger. Kaya ang una ko dito by next month, kapag bababa dito yung mga DSWD, sabi ko, paki-silip nga ang mga taong — nakakaawa eh. Maybe you’d be short of everything but not food. Mahirap yan gutom,” the President said.

“I am happy that Manny has decided to pour another 300 million for you here,” he continued, while lauding Department of Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol for having the said amount available “right away” for the province.

PRRD said he was willing to implement the Bangsamoro Basic Law if that would put an end to the Mindanao conflict.

“Ako naman in return, kasi nanalo ako, I am willing to implement, bukas kaagad, ang BBL. Ngayon, tanggalin lang natin yung mga may issues about the Constitution,” Pres. Duterte said. “[Y]ou can develop the resources if you want, you can invite investors except yung Constitutional provisions, tanggalin na lang muna natin,” he continued.

The President even brought the idea of trading with China and tapping the resource-rich West Philippine Sea. “[S]a China Sea, if we can just have a settlement with them despite the arbitral judgment, I think that marami tayong benefits na makuha. Eh hindi yan hingiin natin — that they will come here and we are planning to establish economic zones pati farm-to-market roads,” he said.

Moreover, the President disclosed his plans of putting up industrial zones in Mindanao. “Then, ang easy market ko, locators would be China. China ang may pera,” he said. PND