MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday, May 19, hinted on firing two government officials due to allegations of corruption.
“Maybe I’ll fire the corporate counsel tomorrow. Ang DPWH (Department of Public Works and Highways) nga assistant secretary nga akong brad sa law school, ako pong gipa-resign (I asked a DPWH assistant secretary, who was my ‘brother’ in law school, to resign),” Duterte said in a speech during the ceremonial commencement of oil and gas production at an oil field in Alegria, Cebu.
He did not name the two officials, nor did he mention the allegations against them.
The government has only one corporate counsel, Rudolf Philip Jurado. He recently expressed his opposition to a House bill seeking to put the Office of the Government Corporate Counsel (OGCC) under the Office of the Solicitor General. Jurado, as OGCC chief, is assisted by a deputy government corporate counsel and assistant government corporate counsels.
On Saturday, the President also warned other government officials not to engage in corrupt activities.
“I picked you, so you should already know my rules. I told you, don’t steal from the public,” he said in Cebuano.
Later, at the opening ceremony of the Philippine National Games in Cebu City, Duterte talked about how he dismissed two officials, and that one of them apparently asked a member of his family about a problem.
“I told you, this one is serious: If it comes from my children, spouse, grandchildren, cousins, relatives, when they use my name, don’t talk to them. If they ask for something, consider it denied,” Duterte said in Cebuano.
He added: “If you, people from the government, cannot follow this, we have nothing to talk anymore, get out from your position.”
In many of his previous speeches, Duterte had mentioned firing certain government officials due to reports of corruption. – Michael Bueza, with reports from Mick Basa and Bong Santisteban/Rappler.com