DAVAO Mayor Sara Duterte started her first day by giving out instructions to all officers-in-charge of the city departments.
At around 9 a.m., Duterte personally endorsed to the City Planning and Development Office (CPDO) its officer-in-charge (OIC), Robert Alabado, replacing Mario Luis Jacinto who retired from the post.
She also addressed city residents, who approached her outside the CPDO office to ask for assistance, that her office will no longer entertain "free riders," the term she used for those who trooped to the City Mayor's Office (CMO) to seek for rice assistance.
Duterte was surrounded by residents, inquiring where they can get the rice subsidy, which regularly extended by CMO under her father, former city mayor Rodrigo Duterte.
In response, the young Duterte informed them that her office will provide rice assistance for the last time, but gave assurance she will help them find a job to make them productive and self sufficient.
"Ganina giingnan nako sila wala nay free rice next time. Nakastorya nako sila daghan kaayo sila pangayo and they expect nga ako magprovide ana tanan. (I told them there won't be "free rides" next time. I talked to them and they asked for so many things and they expect me to provide these for them)" Duterte said in an interview outside the CPDO office Thursday.
"Ana ko sa ilaha pangitaan tamo ug trabaho unya kamoy bayad ana imong kinahanglan. Next time kinahanglan mutrabaho na sila para sa ilahang pagkaon (I told them I will help them find a job. They have to work for their needs)," she added.
Duterte said she would stand by her platform, which she called Barog, which means empowered Barangays, Academics, Resources, Order, and Governance.
"(My stance is) to empower the barangays to become self-sufficient, independent. For academics, do something about our alternative learning system. Ang kadaghanan sa ilaha dili kaya ug standard schooling nga kadaadlaw musulod. Resources, under this is our tourism, investment promotion, and job generation. All our resources should be maximized. O for peace and order, and G is our government employees, improvement of social services," she explained.
"What we are doing is to strengthen the Dawow program, which is barangay-based to help promote barangays. We have fixed this so that we can organize this into one unit. Through this we can create livelihood projects so the people won't rely on the local government. We will look for jobs for them, teach them, so they can generate their own income. The Inday Sara Para sa Barangay, we will also utilize this. This is now under the City Mayor's Office," Duterte said.
Meanwhile, Duterte admitted that CPDO plays a vital role to smoothly run the City Government.
Duterte said Alabado, former consultant of Jacinto when he was the CPDO head, is just fit to the job.
"He is from the academe. He has a degree in City Planning and has course on traffic," she said.
Duterte said the first thing she emphasized to Alabado is that "I am his boss."
"Unang una giingon nako sa iyaha isa lang ang iyang boss, ako lang ang iyang boss. Gi-endorse nako siya sa city planning office ug giingnan nako mga tao didto boss nila si Robby (Alabado) when it pertains to City Planning Office. (First I told him that I am his only boss. I endorsed him to the CPDO and I told the personnel there that Robby is their boss)," Duterte said.
She said Alabado's marching order from her is to prioritize relocation, traffic, and the City Government offices.
"I told him to prioritize government center, that let's do something about our city government offices. Also, our settlements, relocation, so we can do something about our informal settlers, and our traffic," she said.
"I wanted to pullout the City Housing from the City Planning Office but Robby promised me he can handle it. It would be good for now because we do not want to disturb the current procedures of the office, but I do want the City Housing to become a different office," Duterte said in vernacular.
Duterte also formally announced her department heads whom she has chosen.
"For the City Information Office, Bong Aportadera siya gyud (he's the department head). Investment Promotion and Tourism Office head would be Jason Magnaye, City Administrator's Office si attorney Leika Lopez," she said.
"All coterminous positions, I have extended them for one month while the positions that did not have heads in the first place like the City Planning gibutangan ug (we appointed an) OIC. We are also looking for a traffic head. All job orders, they would also be extended until July 31," Duterte said.
Duterte said she would have her first department heads meeting on Monday after the flag raising ceremony.
"There would be an inspection and checking of the departments' performance. A lot will leave their posts, it would also be a way to save on our funds in line with our planning. We expect that by August to December the departments can perform smoothly," Duterte said in vernacular.
City mayor's office
Duterte also decided to transfer her office on the ground floor, formerly occupied by the General Services Office (GSO).
But as renovations are being done in her new office, which is expected to be completed next week, Duterte jokingly said: "Temporarily diri sa sa ilalom sa calachuchi nga punuan ko mag opisina, (Temporarily I would stay here under the Calachuchi tree)."
"Hopefully by next week they would finish the renovations. I would stay there permanently," she said. (Jade C. Zaldivar)