President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday lectured Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol that he could have purchased rice for the people using the Rolex watch he received as Christmas gift, instead of just returning it.
"Kaya si Piñol nagyayabang na at bakit naman niya isauli ang Rolex?" Duterte said, making some of the attendees of the seventh anniversary of Federalismo Alyansa of Bicol (FAB) at the Legazpi City Convention Center, Legazpi City, Albay on Thursday.
"Sabihin mo kay Piñol, ilang Rolex ba ang ... how about the others? Siguro mga coming Christmas, isauli ninyo lahat iyan? Ibigay n'yo sa akin ipagbili ko ibili ko ng bigas, ipakain ko sa mga tao," he added as the crowd applauded.
Duterte added that during his time as a mayor of Davao City, he would urge gifters to give him rice or viands and send them to some communities.
"Pero ako sa Davao, every Christmas, sasabihin ko na alam ko madaming magbigay, mayor eh. Hindi mo talaga maiwasan ‘yan. Sabi ko, 'Huwag na kayong magbigay sa akin. Bigyan n'yo ‘ko ng bigas. Kung gusto ninyo magbigay sa akin, bigas.' O pagkatapos niyan, ‘O, sige ipadala mo doon sa ano.’ ‘Yan, ... Bigas o ulam," he said.
On his Facebook post, Piñol said that after returning the Rolex watch with a P450,000 price tag, he felt relieved that he could look anyone straight in the eye because he was following Duterte's directive that no one in government should be linked to corruption.
Meanwhile, Duterte in his speech vowed that he will issue an anti-corruption measure.
"Corruption in my Executive department, down to the ... masisiguro ninyo ‘yan. One day we will have…Mag-a-adjust lang ako muna. But one day I will enforce the anti-corruption measure," he said without giving details. —LBG, GMA News