TOP Davao officials expressed their gratitude to former President Rodrigo Duterte, who officially stepped down from the national post after six years of service.

Senator Christopher "Bong Go, in a Facebook post, shared a selfie with Duterte, minutes before his term ended.

Go, a long-time aide of the President ever since the latter was still Davao City mayor for more than 20 years, said he was inspired by the President to run for office and become a public servant.

"...Ang Pangulo ang humubog sa [akin] para maging lingkod bayan na laging handang magserbisyo at may malasakit sa lahat, lalo na ang mga higit na nangangailangan (The President molded me to serve the public that is ready anytime, and has a concern for everyone)," the senator said.

Go recently revealed that he offered him to be his legal counsel. However, the ex-President has not formally accepted his offer.

Davao City Vice Mayor J. Melchor Quitain Jr. also lauded Duterte for his "successful and fruitful" service in the country.

"The no-nonsense approach of PRRD [President Rodrigo Roa Duterte] is exactly what this country needed to boost development and curtail criminality in the Philippines. It was a very successful and fruitful 6 years. Thank you President Duterte!" Quitain said in a text message to SunStar Davao.

Quitain Jr., during the oathtaking and inauguration of newly-elected local government officials of Davao City and members of the House of Representatives at the Sangguniang Panlungsod on Monday afternoon, June 27, bared the creation of the President Rodrigo Roa Duterte Presidential Library in the city. The library, he said, aims to honor the accomplishment of Duterte.

Outgoing Presidential Commission For The Urban Poor (PCUP) Commissioner Norman Baloro also thanked the President for the latter's "trust and confidence" in appointing him as commissioner in 2018.

"Being an appointee of PRRD is both an honor and pride, especially I came from the LGBT community. I hope I made him proud of what I have done in the PCUP, with a few resolutions for the benefit of the urban poor and sectors," Baloro said

Prior to his national appointment, he served as Davao City Social Services Development Office (now City Social Welfare and Development Office) Buhangin District head.

His term as PCUP commissioner for Mindanao will end on Thursday, June 30, and will start working for the Office of the Vice President (OVP) under the Public Assistance Division the next day.

Former Davao City Councilor Mary Joselle Villafuerte thanked Duterte for his support in the health sector, especially to the frontliners during the Covid-19 pandemic.

"Everything he promised and more, he delivered. Six years is not enough, especially because the pandemic delayed many projects. But we are grateful we had a President who cared for our people," Villafuerte said in an online message to SunStar Davao.

"Thank you for taking care of us and our frontliners during this pandemic. You have saved so many lives," she added.

Former Councilor Danilo Dayanghirang, in a radio interview, gave the ex-President a "95 percent" grade for his performance in the past six years.

Despite Duterte admitting that corruption is hard to eradicate, but still, Dayanghirang lauded him for his efforts in removing discrepancies in the government.

"Halos perfect ang iyang gihimo, atong pinangga nga Presidente (Almost everything that our beloved President had made is perfect)," he said.

Dayanghirang also lauded former Davao City Mayor and Vice President Sara Duterte for her governance in the city for the last three non-consecutive terms.

10th Infantry Division (10ID) Commander Nolasco Mempin commended the former President for institutionalizing the Executive Order (EO) No. 70 - creating the National Task Force to End the Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), signed in December 2018.

Mempin said 10ID has made numerous significant strides in its counterinsurgency campaign and anti-terrorism campaign in its area of responsibility.

"From being the AFP's [Armed Forces of the Philippines’] national priority area six years ago due to the heavy density of enemy presence and activity here in Region 11, we have now become a center of excellence in combating insurgency," Mempin said.

Renowned Davao-based radio personality and Philippine Broadcasting Service (PBS) Director General Rizal Giovanni “Bong” Aportadera also thanked the President for entrusting him with the radio arm of the government.

“We also share all the accomplishments of PBS with our fellow workers in Government, we thank our President for supporting all the changes in uplifting government radio,” Aportadera said.

He served as Davao City Tourism Operations Office head and city information officer under then city mayors Rodrigo and Sara, respectively.

Councilor Bernie Al-ag thanked the former President for his efforts to place big-ticket projects in Mindanao.

“Nakita nato nga pwede man diay makahimo og big ticket projects sa Mindanao kung atoang Presidente, so thank you Mr. President for your help and your service to the Filipino people and dire sa Davao City, habang naa ka dire sa Davao, naa ra mi permente to protect you and to be with you whatever we can help sa iyahang retirement stage na karun sa iyahang pagpahuway dire sa Davao,” Al-ag said during the AFP-PNP Press Conference on June 29, 2022.

For his part, Antonio dela Cruz, former President and current chairman of Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (DCCCII) President, described the former President is the ‘modern Moses of the Philippines’.

“From the Chamber of Commerce, Mr. President daghang salamat sa imong tanan tabang nga imuhang gibuhat sa among pundok gikan sa imong pagka-Mayor hangtod sa imuhang pagka-Presidente og (thank you for all your help since your time as a mayor to being the President) indeed kung atong balikan suma sa akong giingon sa una (just what I have told you before), you are the modern Moses of the Philippines, you liberated the Philippines, it is from the Egypt now to the promise land because of you nakatagamtam mi og mga kalambuan sa Pilipinas labi na gyud sa peace and order and sa business community (we were able to achieve progress and peace and order, especially in the business community),” Dela Cruz said.

Tek Ocampo, meanwhile, said the President’s performance was “beyond expectation.”

“Well ang performance ni Presidente beyond expectation daghan gyud kaayo gyud sya’g nahimo, dili na nato kinahanglan elaborate kay ma-feel ug makita man gyud nato na iyang nahimo, tremendous and gigantus project na karun lang nahimo sa iyang administrasyon, mga benepisyo sa mga tao, AFP-PNP, tanan including media daghan sya’g natabang,” Ocampo said.

Duterte, on Thursday morning, formally left Malacañang on Thursday morning, wherein he met his successor, Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr.

He skipped his attendance at Marcos' inauguration at the National Museum, where his daughter, Sara, attended.

In a short video uploaded by Former Presidential Spokesperson Martin Andanar, Duterte called on Filipinos to support the new administration.

"Tulungan natin si (Let us help) Marcos," he said.

Before assuming the presidency in 2016, he became mayor from 1988 to 1998, then from 2001 to 2010, and lastly from 2013 to 2016. Between 1998 and 2001, he was the First District Representative. RGL