Kalayaan Grounds, Malacañan Palace
March 31, 2017

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte led a Day For Women at the Kalayaan Grounds in Malacañan Palace.

In his remarks, the President recalled the sacrifices of his late mother, Mrs. Soledad Roa Duterte, despite his being a strong-willed youth back then. “I’ve always been close to my mother, siya lang ‘yong who stood by me… It was my mother who had faith in me,” he said.

Stressing how much he values and respects women, he cited a few of the pro-women measures implemented in Davao City during his mayoral stint, including the Women Development Code – an ordinance created to protect women in the city against discrimination and to mandate an allocation of funds to gender-sensitive projects.

President Duterte also mentioned that apart from the ongoing fight against corruption and the trade of illegal drugs, government is also geared towards women empowerment, adding that some members of his Cabinet are females. He gave them direct authority to approve or implement programs and other activities concerning their respective departments.

In terms of the country’s foreign relations, the Chief Executive shared that the Russian government is particularly interested in small and medium businesses, and urged all women groups present to attend seminars for entrepreneurship, like the ones hosted by Go Negosyo.

The whole month of March is declared as National Women’s Month as part of the worldwide observance of International Women’s Day. This year’s celebration, led by the Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) and other agencies, is the first under the leadership of President Duterte. It bears the theme, ‘WE Make Change Work for Women’.

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