MANILA—President Rodrigo Duterte graced the 80th birthday celebration of Manila Mayor and former President Joseph “Erap” Estrada at the Manila Hotel on Wednesday, April 19.
In his message, President Duterte greeted the former President on his natal day and reiterated his commitment to eliminate illegal drugs and corruption in the country, noting that failing to address the problem threatens the next generation of Filipinos.
His goal, Duterte said, is to eliminate graft and corruption and illegal drugs in the country and then he will let his economic managers improve the country’s economy.
He said among the members of the Cabinet are brilliant men who could run the economy well, assuring the people that they are also clean and honest.
At the same time, the President promised to go after the country’s abusive oligarchs, particularly those who are not paying the correct taxes.
The government’s peace talks with the communists and Muslim separatists are ongoing, he also said, as he warned about the threats from Islamic extremists.
Present during the celebration were former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, former Vice President Jejomar Binay, Sen. Loren Legarda, Rep. Imelda Marcos, and former Senators Juan Ponce Enrile and Ferdinand Marcos Jr.