In compliance with Pres. Duterte’s directives to LGUs Chief Executives in his 4th SONA on July 22, 2019, the Secretary of DILG, Edgardo Ano called for a Press Conference with some MMDA officials, 17 Metro Manila Mayors and the Head of the PNP on July 29, 2019 at NAPOLCOM Bldg., DILG, Quezon City.

The Press Conference headed by the Secretary of DILG, Sec. Edgardo Ano, the Chairman of MMDA, Danilo Lim, Undersecretary of MMDA, Antonio Garcia, Jr., the 17 Mayors of Metro Manila, the Chief of NCRPO, Gen. Eliazar, the Undersecretaries and Assistant Secretaries of DILG.

They Press Conference centered on the directives particularly on the Memorandum Circular sent by the President addressed to Secretary of DILG ordering all LGUs Chief Executives to have a clearing operations due to illegal structures, illegal parking and illegal vendors that caused obstruction in major roads and streets. These obstructions are said to be the main reason why there is worsening traffic problems despite the efforts and endeavours of the national and local government to ease the burdens of traffic congestion of roads and streets all over Metro Manila.

The President had likewise ordered the suspension of the operation of PCSO gaming activities in all the branches operating in NCR and to wait until further notice.

Prior to discussion of the issues at hand Sec. Edgardo Ano made his statement that LGUs Chief Executives should lead the quest of the President in his fight against illegal drugs activities in the country.

Furthermore, he urged them to implement this directives of the President within 45-60 days regardless of the population and the size in terms of geographical areas in their jurisdiction. Failure to do so would be punishable by suspension or removal from the service. In addition, he emphasized that this is a serious call from the President and that they should take this into serious consideration and should expedite their actions and implementation that redound to the benefit of our country particularly to whole citizenry.

At this juncture, the 17 Mayors were given the chance to express their full support. They promised and made their commitment to implement the directives of the President without any reservation.

Gen. Eliazar, Chief of NCRPO had manifested his full support and commitment to ensure the safety of all LGU Chief Executives down to Barangay level while performing their duties to their constituents with utmost integrity and honesty.

Sec. Ano commented that in the implementation of this directives the most affected are the illegal sidewalk vendors. They would be appealing to give consideration of their plight because they could not afford to rent a stall in the market and most all it is their only source of living to support the needs of their families. However, he stand firm by saying, ” kahit na mahirap ang tao at nghahanapbuhay dapat sumunod sa ano mang batas na ipinapairal”. He even mentioned that Filipinos abroad observed discipline. So, we should also impose discipline to all citizenry in our country. Let not poverty be a hindrance to become our country progressive and worth living.

Meanwhile, in a brief interview with City Mayor of Quezon City, Hon. Joy Belmonte expressed her sadness to some people from the media for giving her cold treatment. She clarified matters that as City Mayor she is doing her duty to the best that she can do to the constituents whom she vowed to serve. She admitted that she is a woman of few words and a silent worker. She mean what she said. In the case of the illegal vendors affected in the clearing operations she would do everything to protect their interest. To those who can’t afford to pay rental for the stall in the market she would negotiate with them and she would shoulder the rent coming from her own pocket just to ease their burdens.