Paolo Duterte denies plan to pursue House Speakership

Robie de Guzman   •   May 28, 2019   •   3222

Davao City First District Representative Paolo “Pulong” Duterte | Courtesy : PVI-Press by Cerilo Ebrano

Newly-elected Davao City First District Representative Paolo “Pulong” Duterte on Monday denied that he is pursuing the House Speakership post.

On a Facebook post, the presidential son assailed rumor mongers for feeding the Chief Executive wrong information about his supposed candidacy for the top House post.

“Pulong to President Duterte: I did not say I want to be Speaker… may nagkamali na naman bulong sa tenga mo Mr. President,” the younger Duterte said.

The incoming House member posted the message after his father, President Rodrigo Duterte, threatened to step down from office if Pulong pushes through with his bid when the 18th Congress opens in June.

During the oath taking ceremony of newly-appointed government officials in Malacañang on Monday, Duterte said he will resign if his son will decide to gun for House Speakership.

“Itong si Paolo, sabihin ko sa kaniya, ‘If you run for speakership, let me know kasi kung tatakbo ka, magreresign ako kasi marami na tayo.’ Yung kapatid mo na mayor, tapos, quite really for someone who’s so uneasy about these things. Though I think it’s a democratic practice, hayaan mo yang tao sino gusto nila,” he said.

The Chief Executive also revealed that several congressmen have approached him to ask for his support for their bid to get the top House post.

Among them are congressmen-elect Alan Peter Cayetano (Taguig), Lord Allan Velasco (Marinduque), Martin Romualdez (Leyte) and Pantaleon Alvarez (Davao del Norte).

While he personally knows and considers them as his close allies, the President said he will remain neutral on the speakership issue.

“Wala akong kinakampihan. I am on my last three terms. Gusto ko lang to do good. If that good is not good for everybody then I’m sorry. Yan lang ang makaya ko,” he said.

Others eyeing the speakership are incumbent Majority Leader Fredenil Castro (Capiz) and Rep. Aurelio “Dong” Gonzales (Pampanga).

Muling pagbiyahe ng provincial buses sa Davao, ipinagpaliban

Robie de Guzman   •   May 25, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Ipinagpaliban muna ang nakatakda sanang pagbabalik-operasyon ngayong araw ng pampublikong provincial buses na bumibiyahe mula Davao City papunta sa iba’t ibang lalawigan sa Davao region.

Ayon sa management ng Davao City Overland Transport Terminal (DCOTT), hindi pa umano handa ang mga lokal na pamahalaan ng mga karatig-lugar na tumanggap ng mga pasaherong manggagaling sa Davao City na may naitalang mga kaso ng novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

“Dili musugot atong mga kasigpit nga municipalities and provinces, di pa sila ready nga mudawat sa atoang mga pasahero nga maggikan diri sa Davao City because they don’t have facilities yet pa daw, hatagaan pa nato silag panahon,” ani Aisa Usop, ang head ng DCOTT.

(Ayaw pumayag ng mga kalapit nating municipalities and provinces, hindi pa sila ready na tumanggap ng ating mga pasahero na manggagaling dito sa Davao City because they don’t have facilities pa raw. Bibigyan natin sila ng panahon.)

Ayon kay Usop, humihingi pa ng karagdagang panahon ang mga karatig-lalawigan na makapaghanda ng isolation centers para sa mga pasaherong maaaring makitaan ng sintomas ng COVID-19.

Nasa ilalim na ng general community quarantine (GCQ) ang Davao City simula noong May 16 at ngayong araw sana nakatakda ang pagbalik sa operasyon ng provincial buses sa Davao Region.

Nilinaw naman ng Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board na hindi pa talaga maaaring bumiyahe ang lahat ng provincial buses dahil hindi pa naiisyuhan ng special permit ang mga ito.

Sa ilalim ng GCQ guidelines, maaaring payagang bumiyahe ang ilang piling uri ng transportasyon sa isang lugar kung may special permit ito at nakakasunod sa health and safety protocols.

Kabilang sa protocols ang pagsusuot ng face mask para sa mga pasahero, driver at konduktor; ang pagpapatupad ng mga hakbang bilang pagsunod sa social distancing measures gaya ng pagmamarka sa mga upuan kung saan lang maaaring pumuwesto ang mga pasahero; kailangan ding gumamit ng cashless o contactless na paraan sa pangongolekta ng pasahe upang mabawasan ang physical contact.

Nakasaad rin sa guidelines na limitado lang ang bilang ng mga pasaherong maaaring isakay sa mga pampublikong bus, jeep, taxi at traysikel upang maiwasan ang pagsisiksikan. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Marisol Montaño)

Duterte fires OCD Deputy Administrator Kristoffer James Purisima

Marje Pelayo   •   May 22, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has dismissed Kristoffer James Purisima as deputy administrator assistant secretary of the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD).

According to Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque, the President decided to remove Purisima from office due to “loss of trust and confidence.”

Roque could not tell, however, under what circumstance prompted the President to fire Purisima.

Wala na po akong ibang impormasyon (I don’t have additional information) other than he was terminated due to loss of trust and confidence,” Roque confirmed.

The OCD is the government’s main unit responsible for disaster preparedness and response in times of calamity.

Prior to his position in OCD, Purisima served as spokesperson of Task Force Bangon Marawi. MNP (with details from Rosalie Coz)

Davao City spent over P400 million for COVID-19 fight — Sara Duterte

Robie de Guzman   •   May 21, 2020

The Davao City government has spent at least P476 million for its response against the spread of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Mayor Sara Duterte said.

In an interview over Davao City Disaster Radio, Duterte said the fund was sourced from the city’s internal revenue allotment (IRA) under the national budget.

She said the city’s one month IRA amounted to P476 million and all local government units (LGUs) have been mandated by the national government to spend the budget for COVID-19 response.

Aside from the P476 million, Mayor Sara also said that the city also sourced out funds from its 2020 budget, which include the peace and order fund, City Mayor’s Office, and Public Enhancement Service Fund.

Duterte said the city’s biggest expenditure remains for food, including rations to residents.

As of May 8, the city has already distributed a total of 788,656 food packs. The food rationing started on March 23.

Aside from food rations, the city government also shouldered the hospital expenses of COVID-19 patients and the cost of cremation for those who succumbed to the virus.

Duterte earlier announced she has donated her one-year salary to a trust fund to help medical workers acquiring the disease from their work.

As of May 20, the city has recorded a total of 206 coronavirus infections, with 25 fatalities and 100 recoveries.

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