DAVAO CITY -- Indian businessmen are interested to invest their money in the Philippines despite the existing martial law in Mindanao, President Rodrigo Duterte said upon his arrival from his first official visit to India.
“They didn’t even mention it. They said, ‘We want to come [there],” the President said during a press conference at the Davao International Airport in Davao City upon arrival from India on Friday, January 26.
Duterte has spoken before a crowd of top Indian business executives in New Delhi as part of his three-day official visit.
“But I was the first to say that: Maybe just avoid that western portion of Mindanao, especially down to the archipelagic Zamboanga,” he said.
“If you have the map of the Philippines, your left is the Western side, just avoid it. Visayas, Luzon, and some parts of Mindanao -- Davao, maybe Butuan, there’s a less… unless there will be something coming up in the days to come,” he explained.
During the press conference, the President reiterated his resolve to stop corruption.
He instructed the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to make sure that projects are completed within a month.
“I am giving DPWH to tell the contractors to complete it within 30 days. Pag hindi, I will give it to another contractor, cancel the contract and sue you,” he said, adding that he would only allow a delay of one month.
“I will remind everybody through the DILG, through the mayors na there should be no open holes or canals everywhere. And I’m giving everybody in government only 30 days. Either they cancel the contract and allow somebody else or somebody else’s endeavor to, kung meron siyang pera…” he said.
“So henceforth, all projects of the Philippines would be something like a Swiss challenge. If I want building, if I want a highway, if I want railroads built, ipakita ko sa inyo, there would be an open space for everybody,” Duterte said.
Meanwhile, the Chief Executive announced that he is planning to visit the province of Albay, following the eruption of the Mayon Volcano.
On January 22, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHILVOCS) has raised the Alert Level of Mayon Volcano to Level 4 or “hazardous eruption imminent.” (PND)