Duterte to abolish urban poor commission over ‘junkets’

December 12, 2017 - 12:38 PM
PCUP chairman Terry Ridon and President Rodrido Duterte (PCUP photo)

MANILA, Philippines — (UPDATE – 1:20 p.m.) President Rodrigo Duterte intends to abolish the Presidential Commission on Urban Poor for, among others, “unnecessary junkets,” Malacañang said on Tuesday, December 12.

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said Duterte had also noted that the PCUP has not met as a collegial body.

Earlier, Duterte earlier announced he would abolish an entire government commission due to corruption.

“So this kind of work performance has no place in the Duterte administration. We reiterate: we are serious about the drive against corruption in government,” Roque said.

The PCUP is chaired by lawyer Terry Ridon, who used to represent the Kabataan party-list. The commissioners are: Dr. Melissa A. Aradanas, Dr. Joan A. Lagunda, Manuel L. Serra Jr. and Noe B. Indonto.

Reacting to the decision, Ridon issued the following statement:

“We thank the President for the opportunity to serve the nation.
The public record of the agency can speak for itself: we had implemented with full integrity the presidential promise of no demolition without relocation.
We had represented government and given voice to the urban poor in international conferences on public housing, poverty alleviation and climate change, which was unprecedented in any administration.
We performed our mandate to the best of our abilities, with integrity and competence, despite the heavy burden of undertaking genuine reform.”

“This latest decision of the President to abolish the PCUP, among others, for unnecessary junkets of its officials, prove(s) beyond doubt that the President is very serious in his anti-corruption campaign,” Roque said.

The PCUP was created through Executive Order No. 82 in 1986 “to serve as a direct link of the urban poor to the government in policy information and program implementation.”