Duterte: I’ve fulfilled my promises in electricity
Author: Darvin Tocmo Date Posted:26 February 2019
Except for untangling the traffic gridlocks on EDSA, President Duterte says he has delivered on all of his campaign promises.
He noted that Fidel Ramos was given special authority to solve the country’s electricity woes upon assuming the presidency in 1992.
“Wala akong pangako na hindi ko natupad except ’yang EDSA (I did not make promises I did not keep except EDSA),” Duterte said, referring to solving the traffic woes on Metro Manila’s main thoroughfare, during a campaign sortie of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) in Laguna on Saturday.
The President lamented that the proposal to grant him emergency powers was met with suspicion by critics who believed it would be prone to corruption.
“I did not say there will be no bidding. I said I would need money to repair or rehabilitate or do away with the present situation. Others said, ‘Let us give Duterte the power, extraordinary power.’ You did not hear that from my mouth, not even once,” the Chief Executive said.
“What did I hear from Congress? They were not in favor of it. ‘It cannot be done, you know, graft and corruption will be committed.’ When I heard that, I said, ‘No, take it away from the table. I do not want it.’ If you talk about corruption, son of a b****, I would leave that to you,” he added.
The Department of Transportation has asked Congress to grant the Duterte administration three-year emergency power to address the traffic problem. It has also submitted to Congress a list of road, rail and air projects intended to ease traffic congestion.
A proposed Traffic and Congestion Crisis Act was also filed to enable the government to undertake projects through direct contracting, repeat order and direct negotiation and to fast-track the procurement process.
In September, Duterte said he would just leave the EDSA traffic congestion as it is because Congress refused to give him emergency powers.
While the President admitted he could not do anything to end the traffic woes, he claimed that his other promises have been fulfilled. He said he has fired several officials tagged in corruption and has intensified the war on illegal drugs to make the country’s streets safe.
There have been instances, however, when the Chief Executive expressed frustration over the corruption and drug problems plaguing the country.
In 2016, Duterte vowed to end the drug menace within the first six months of his term but later on admitted he could not do so because of the involvement of several officials in the narcotics trade.
In October, he revealed he had offered to resign during a military command conference because he could not run after all corrupt officials.
Duterte noted that measures on free tuition and universal health care have been signed into law. He also cited the pay hike of soldiers and policemen and the continuation of the conditional cash transfer program, an initiative that he said was funded by the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion law.
“Ano pa naman gusto (What else do you want)?” he asked.
Duterte has also promised a shift to federalism but Congress has yet to pass a bill amending the Constitution and changing the form of government.