Duterte tells businessmen: ‘Slap corrupt officials in front of me’ » Manila Bulletin News

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Duterte tells businessmen: ‘Slap corrupt officials in front of me’

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By Genalyn Kabiling

Public humiliation awaits corrupt officials in government.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his speech during the Guangzhou Automobile Group Co., Ltd. (GAC) Motor Philippines Brand Launch at the Metro Tent Convention Center in Metrowalk Complex, Pasig City on November 7, 2018.  (TOTO LOZANO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his speech during the Guangzhou Automobile Group Co., Ltd. (GAC) Motor Philippines Brand Launch at the Metro Tent Convention Center in Metrowalk Complex, Pasig City on November 7, 2018.
(TOTO LOZANO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

President Duterte has given businessmen a chance to slap government officials involved in corruption “a dozen times” to humiliate them.

The President said he was prepared to receive corruption complaints from the business community and let the complainant and the accused to face each other in his office.

“If you have something against anybody in government, anybody at all, go to me, I will contact you and I will call the person you are complaining against and the three of us will talk,” he said during the launch of Guangzhou Automobile Group Motor Co. in Pasig City Wednesday night.

“And I assure you that if it is indeed something which amounts to corruption or graft, I’ll give you the privilege of slapping that person a dozen times in front of me. That way, you placed him in humiliation and you maybe shed off his dignity,” he added.

Duterte acknowledged that humiliation was among the “right remedies for an idiot who is not needed in the government.”

“Humiliation and maybe a loss of face is more than just the money. It is the worst way of losing whatever is left of you in this planet,” he said.

The President has urged local and foreign business not to hesitate to report any official involved in extortion and other corrupt practices in government transactions. He assured them that he does not tolerate corruption in the bureaucracy.

“I’d like to encourage, urge, and move businessmen, especially foreigners and locals, that if there’s anything that bothers you in the course of your business, in your application to do business or in the running of your business, and you run into something like attempts or demands amounting to corruption, everybody is put on notice that you can have an audience with me in my office by the Pasig River,” he said.

“I’m giving you a 24 hours audience should the case may be,” he added.

Dutert said he recently signed Republic Act No. 11032 or the East of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018 to help simplify government services and transactions.

The law requires government agencies to act on applications within three days for simple transactions, seven days for complex ones and 20 days for the highly technical matters.

“With this law, we expect to attract more investments and encourage stakeholders to actively contribute in strengthening and cultivation of our industries,’ he said.

The President, meantime, thanked GAC Motor for investing and expanding its business in the country. He said the entry of the firm in the local car market would provide consumers with more choices in the purchase of their vehicles.

“Rest assured that your trust will never be put in vain. The Philippine automotive market is among the fastest growing in Southeast Asia. Its annual growth rate of 22 percent in the last five years makes it a conducive place for trade and business,” he said.

“Our outlook for the automotive industry in the long term remains bullish as we expect continuing motorization that will be driven by our robust economic growth. Indeed, recent studies estimate that the local motor — vehicle demand could reach one million units in 2028,” he said.

He also assured the car firm that his government was doing its best to ensure a level-playing field for investors. “We will continue to provide both foreign and local investors like the GAC Motor and Legado Motors with assistance they need so that their ventures may prosper and flourish,” he said.

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