DUTERTE TRANSCRIPTS: FVR’S book launch. 17 July 2017

(Note from MindaNews: This is the official transcript of President Rodrigo Duterte’s speech, released by the Presidential News Desk of the Presidential Communications Office)

Presidential Communications Office
Presidential News Desk 

[Delivered at Social Hall, DND Building, Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City | 17 July 2017]

Salamat po. Kindly sit down.

I also have a prepared speech. And in the same manner, before really actually reading it, I’d like to say something to the President:

President Fidel V. Ramos, you are my idol. [applause] You are my number one supporter, but at the same time you are the number one critic now. [laughter]

So it is a matter really of principle in life, you are your place. And I respect your criticism. I accept your advice. And maybe I will mimic your role as president before. I will follow you, just like what the T-shirt says. Only difference is that I am not a military man.

But love of country, patas tayo, sir. I would say that I love my country as much as you do. And we are ready to die for this country. [applause]

May I be allowed to read?

To former President Fidel V. Ramos, I truly admire your sincerity and concern for the Filipino people. You have remained active in nation-building even after you finished your term in office.

I extend my wholehearted congratulations on the successful publication of “Make Change Work!” — Volume 12 in the series of compilation of your column in the Manila Bulletin.

This book is very timely given these challenges faced by our country today. Why do some resist change? Is it out of fear of the unknown or is it out of inconvenience of letting go of what we have grown accustomed to?

These are the questions confronting us as we go about the tasks necessary to create a peaceful and progressive nation.

But there is one thing we do know: Lasting progress cannot be accomplished overnight. It is a long and arduous process, so it behooves upon us to implement the necessary changes with due haste.

I hope that this book will enlighten our countrymen on how to achieve genuine transformation for the betterment of our nation, which [is by working together].

Let us therefore remember that opportunity [of] a better future for the present and the coming generations is more important than our unfounded reservations.

Let us make change work for our people and country.

Again, congratulations on your book, sir. And I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

You can continue criticizing me, sir. You have the… [laughter]

Thank you.