MANILA — President-elect Rodrigo Duterte could set another milestone in the nation’s political history by breaking a tradition — taking his oath of office before a Punong Barangay, Rep. Sal Fortuno of the 5th District of Camarines Sur on Friday said.
“It would not be surprising if a down-to-earth politician like President-elect Duterte departs from the old tradition and further boost his mass appeal by taking his oath of office before a Punong Barangay in recognition of their sacrifices and unrelenting efforts to deliver frontline services of the government,” Fortuno said.
He noted the tradition of Chief Justices and other members of the Supreme Court administering the oath of office to the country’s past Presidents-elect.
The 16th Congress will resume its session on May 23, after which the House of Representatives and the Senate will pass a joint resolution convening their joint session and act as a National Board of Canvassers to canvass the votes for the President and the Vice-President, and officially proclaim the winners, as mandated by the Constitution.
The Camarines Sur lawmaker stressed that letting a Punong Barangay administer his oath of office will surely endear him more to the more than 42,000 Punong Barangays in the country.
Incidentally, Fortuno is principal author of RA 10755, signed into law by Pres. Benigno Aquino III just last March 29 this year, authorizes the Punong Barangay to administer the oath of any public official including the President of the Philippines.
“Duterte could be writing history by being the first President, the highest elected Chief Executive, to be sworn into office by the lowest elected Chief executive in the country, the Punong Barangay,” he stressed
Fortuno is chairman of the House Committee on Poverty Alleviation under the outgoing 16th Congress.
He just got re-elected with the highest ever margin of votes, 97,692, in the history of his district over a veteran and former three-term Rep. Felix O, Alfelor, Jr. PNA/northboundasia.com