President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday urged the Ten Outstanding Young Men (TOYM) of 2016 to support his fight against corruption.
"Our nation is in a crucial period of introducing concrete and meaningful change. I need your support now more than ever so that we can collectively overcome the ills of illegal drugs, criminality and corruption that has plagued our nation for so long," President Duterte said in his speech during the awarding ceremonies held at the Rizal Hall of the Malacanang Palace.
The President encouraged the people to report corrupt government officials by using Malacanang's complaint hotline 8888.
"You can dial the number and just state out your statement or your complaint without even mentioning your name. And if you are maybe a little bit timid or afraid, or outright --- you don't want trouble --- maybe you can just buy a new SIM right away after making the call and I will take it from there," the President said.
The President said corruption has really pulled the country down "without attributing it to any particular administration."
"Let me just give you an analogy of something like an airplane running at full speed on the runway for so many years without really lifting and that is what the Philippines is," the President said.
"I'm just a 'probinsiyano.' I come from a corner in Mindanao but I tried to just envision something for my country during this administration. I will really finish this," he added, referring to his fight against corruption.
The President, on the other hand, gave the government agencies one month to release documents of the projects they want to implement to prevent corruption.
"If you cannot release it in one month then let me know so that I would not suspect that you practically sat on the papers," he said.
President Duterte said he gave 92 officials from the regulatory bodies the option of facing charges or to resign.
"You resign for you have become the pariah of this government and do not expect me to be courteous even to you when I see you there out," he said.
President Duterte lauded the Junior Chamber International (JCI) for its effective and exemplary leadership which are best demonstrated by the 2016 TOYM awardees.
"By committing to do our part in nation-building and by even simply doing the things that is expected of us every day, we can immensely contribute to the cultivation of a far more better and more secure future for ourselves, our families and our communities," he said.
The 2016 TOYM awardees include: Earl Martin S. Valencia, honoree for Entrepreneurship; Jhett D. Tolentino (Arts and Theatre); Saturnino H. Tiamson (Arts and Music); Geraldine Z. Racaza (Medicine); Ronivin G. Pagtakhan (Youth Leadership); Richard N. Maullil (Marine Science Conservation); Richard Javad F. Heydarian (Social Science); Randy H. Halasan (Education); Ryan C. Guinaran (Indigenous People Advocacy); and, Clarissa Isabelle L. Delgado (Community Service).
President Duterte was accompanied by the JCI Foundation directors, led by chairman Manny V. Pangilinan, in the handing of awards to the 10 TOYM of 2016.
"As remarkable young men and women, I encourage you to share the responsibility of leading and lifting the Philippines out of the quagmire of complacency by fostering a culture of innovation and excellence that you epitomize," the President said.
"Together, let us work hand in hand to secure the lives of our people, give them the best quality of life that can rightfully be deserved," he added.
Source: Philippines News Agency