PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte said he would continue his “purging regime” as he revealed that he was set to fire another head of agency, three generals and several police officers in the next few days because of alleged irregularities.
In a speech during a Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation’s event on Thursday, the President announced that he would fire the officials “maybe this week.”
Duterte did not name the agency nor discuss details of the supposed misdeeds of the official.
The President said he was also intending to fire another “maybe 70 or 49” policemen and three generals for corruption.
“You are abetting a thing which we have put our hearts into (eliminating), the corruption. I am firing another chairman of an entity in government maybe this week and another set of policemen,” Duterte said.
“In the next few days, this is really a purging regime. I think that I’ll be spending a lot of time just to clean up government and would consume four years for the time that I would be there,” he added.
In a press briefing in Bukidnon on Friday, Palace spokesman Harry Roque Jr. said Duterte was set to replace the chairman of a government-owned and controlled corporation.
“What I do know is that he is scheduled to replace a chairman of a government-owned and -controlled corporation but not really for graft, for other reasons. So it would appear that there’s a second chairman who might be replaced because of graft,” he told reporters.
In the 2016 campaign, Duterte vowed to run a “clean” government. He has since dismissed several government officials who have either failed to fulfill their mandates or were allegedly corrupt.
Among those who were previously axed were Interior Secretary Ismael Sueno, Dangerous Drugs Board Chief Dionisio Santiago, and Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor Terry Ridon.
Even the cousin of Duterte’s partner Cielito “Honeylet” Avanceña, PCUP Commissioner Melissa Avanceña Aradanas, was not spared.
Duterte has said he would not tolerate even a “whiff” of corruption from any government employee.
In his speech on Thursday, Duterte again reminded those who are working in government, particularly the gambling industry players, to stay away from graft and corruption.
“I want to stress again the point that you can come in, expand, do business peacefully but please avoid graft and corruption whether you are the giver or the receiver,” Duterte said.
“All [you have]to do is for you to cooperate, and I said do not give in to extortionists. Be it the police, the BIR (Bureau of Internal Revenue), Customs. [Once I learn about it], I’ll make it hard for you,” he added.
‘Duterte not referring to PCSO chief’
Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office Chairman Jose Jorge Corpuz resigned on Friday because of “health reasons.”
Malacañang quickly clarified that he was not the official referred to by the President on Thursday.
“Mr. Corpuz, for the information of everyone, is not the person whom the President said he will fire for corruption,” Roque said.