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LOOKING BACK SWEET FEBRUARY: RODY TAKES FEDERALISM ADVOCACY TO DUMAGUETE CITY, DIPOLOG CITY.

JERRY DUREZA
Davao City

Davao City Mayor Rody Duterte and his team advocating a shift to a Federal Parliamentary form of government from the present Unitary Presidential system make a two-city swing this week to Dumaguete in Negros Oriental and Dipolog City in Zamboanga del Norte Feb. 11 and 12.

Duterte will be at the Silliman University and another venue in Dumaguete City on Feb. 11 and then fly to Dipolog the following day before taking a Valentine's Day break.

This is the third leg of Duterte's "Listening Tour" which aims to convince leaders of government and the different sectors that a Federal Parliamentary form of government could be the antidote to the poverty in the countryside and the massive corruption in the central government.

Started last month, Duterte and his Federalist allies have visited Butuan City, Agusan del Sur; Zamboanga City; Pagadian City, Cebu City, San Jose del Monte, Bulacan; Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija; and Puerto Princesa, Palawan.

The response has been a mix of excitement and expectation and these were manifested especially in the island province of Palawan where the people and their leaders are complaining that they are being shortchanged by the national government of their share from the Malampaya Natural Gas earnings.

Palawan Governor Jose C. Alvarez said that the national government owes the province an estimated P73-B, a huge amount which could change the whole province if released.

Alvarez also said he believes that Federalism could also bring about the needed development in the countryside, especially in the farflung regions of the country as these areas could "chart their own destiny and future."

The "Listening Tour" is also expected to give Duterte an opportunity to feel the pulse of the people as the clamor for him to run for President gathers steam.



Next week, Duterte and his team will visit Pampanga, Pangasinan and Baguio City.
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