Rizal Hall, Malacañan Palace
February 13, 2018

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte administered the oath of office to more than a hundred newly appointed government officials in a simple ceremony at the Rizal Hall of Malacañan Palace.

In his speech after leading the mass oath taking, President Duterte warned the appointees that he has already fired several government officials due to abuse of public funds, and would continue his drive against graft and corruption.

He reiterated the need to shift to a federal form of government to avoid fissure in Mindanao, saying, “We need peace to move forward.” Likewise, he mentioned the importance of manufacturing to improve the agricultural sector in Mindanao that would subsequently uplift the lives of majority of the poor Mindanaoans. Still on federalism, the President stressed that he will step down from office before 2020 if the federal form of government is perfected by then.

President Duterte added that there was never a paradigm shift on his part from being the mayor of Davao City to becoming Chief Executive. Relative to this, he emphasized that his campaign against illegal drugs will last until the final day of his term, saying, “Not during my watch, huwag sa panahon ko.”

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