DAVAO CITY – Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte turned over 54 multicabs and 86 motorcycles to barangay executives here on Monday along with a clear message to the officials: the vehicles are meant for “public service.”

“This is the people’s money. This comes from their sweat because they paid taxes for this. So the primary purpose of this is to serve public interest,” Duterte said.

Duterte made it clear to the officials that the new vehicles are only to be used during disasters and calamities, as the governnment acquired them through the “people’s money.”

“If there is a compelling reason to use it, use it. In case of disasters, bomb explosion, you lend a hand, use that. That is why it should always be in good condition,” he said.

The ceremony was held at the People’s Park on Monday, making the turn over of brand new multicabs and Honda motorcycles — reportedly costing P400,000 and P80,000 each — visible to the public. The city procured the vehicles from the city’s disaster fund.

The turnover of the vehicles was part the city’s pledge to donate new vehicles for the city’s 182 barangays. Last year, the city turned over 104 multicabs and 68 motorcycles. Another set of vehicles will be turned over after the bidding process is finished.

The use of government vehicles other than official business is a violation to laws including Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (Republic Act No. 3019), Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees (RA 6713), Revised Administrative Code of the Philippines, Commission on Audit (COA) circulars, Government Accounting and Auditing Manual, among others. (davaotoday.com)

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