CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to officiate the oathtaking of the city’s elected officials this evening after his official visit to Malabang, Lanao del Sur to lead the commemoration of the 121st Independence Day.
This was confirmed by city councilor-elect Joyleen Mercedes “Girlie” Balaba, a former TV personality and a known friend of Duterte and members of the First Family.
Balaba said the President promised during the campaign period that if she wins in the midterm elections, he will administer the oath himself.
It was the former television journalist’s first try at politics, but she topped the May 13 election.
Based on the Commission on Elections’ final and official tally, Balaba garnered 74,568 votes, making her the number one city councilor in the 2nd district.
Balaba belongs to the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban), Duterte’s political party, and an ally of incumbent city mayor Oscar Moreno.
Duterte’s promise will be an important move for the President and the newly elected legislators and local chief executive, Balaba said.
“This is historic because this will be the first time for a President to swear in local elected officials outside of Malacañang,” she said, adding that it will also be a first for the city officials to be sworn in by the chief executive.
Duterte’s appearance, Balaba said, is an “indication that Cagayan de Oro is nearer the national government.”
She said it was Duterte who suggested that the oath-taking be held on June 12 as he has a prior engagement in Malabang, Lanao del Sur. The President will be hoisting of the Philippine flag on Independence Day celebration.
“After the event in Malabang, he said he will be dropping by Cagayan de Oro to officiate the oathtaking,” Balaba added. (Editor: Eden Estopace)
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