Mayor Sara's First Lady act in China draws positive remarks

By Lilian Mellejor

April 10, 2018, 8:25 pm

DAVAO CITY -- In a surprise act for Dabawenyos, Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio brushed shoulders with world leaders as President Rodrigo Duterte’s First Lady in his working visit to the People’s Republic of China.

Wearing an aquamarine dress, Mayor Sara accompanied the President to the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference 2018 at the BFA International Convention Center in Boao, Hainan Province.

The President and the mayor were standing side-by-side posing for a photo with world leaders during the forum where they were welcomed by Chinese President Xi Jinping and his First Lady.

A comment on the Facebook page of the Presidential Communications Office, Venus Echavez-Jung said, "Under training na si Sara ! She has to learn it by travelling with PRRD ! Maybe it's too early but there is a possibility that she will run as president in some years! She will follow the footsteps of her father! Nice seeing you Mayor Sara! Good luck!"

A certain Jed commented, "...And it seems Mayor Sarah is being groomed for something."

Boao Forum is an international dialogue platform for Asia Pacific countries and other partner nations and organizations from all over the globe with an aim of bringing together heads of state, business elites, academic experts and media personalities.

Duterte-Carpio and son Mateo Lucas or Stingray joined the President’s high-level delegation to China on Monday from Davao City.

It is the mayor’s first time to accompany the President on his working visit wherein the country's leader engaged with counterparts on cooperation beneficial to the people of the Philippines and the Asia Pacific region.

Meanwhile, speaking at the forum, the President underscored Asia’s role in the world economy.

“Asia is projected to continue its growth through the year 2050. By then, our generation is seen and the region itself to account for more than half of the world’s GDP,” he said.

He pointed out that Asia as an engine of growth is poised to make a larger footprint on the global economy.

“And every country in Asia – big or small – has a role to play and its own contribution to make,” he said. For the Philippines, Duterte said, “We want a society where there are opportunities for all. We want a nation where the hard-working, the talented, and the law-abiding can advance together and move up [the] socio-economic ladder.”

The Philippines has nurtured the dream for a comfortable life for the people, according to Duterte.

“We are slowly making the Filipino dream a reality. As we strive to [push] our economy forward, we encounter challenges. But we will not be deterred. We seek to partner with responsible businesses --- home-grown and foreign-based --- to drive the progress we envision,” he said.

The President reported on his administration’s progress in improving the country’s peace and order situation, the fight against corruption and strengthening the policy framework for businesses to thrive.

He also spoke on the government’s milestone by spending five to seven percent on infrastructure, bring down poverty from 22 percent in 2015 to 14 percent by 2022, and achieve a growth of seven to eight percent every year up to 2022.

He stressed on his administration’s “Build, Build, Build” program which will provide the solid backbone for growth.

“This will continue to upgrade the infrastructure, connect more people and communities and create more jobs,” he said. He announced that the government already started a three-year rolling program amounting to over US$69 billion until 2022.

“We are investing in innovation – in government processes, in technology and in human development. By 2022, the Philippines sees itself as joining the top one-third [in] the Global Innovation Index,” he said.

The President also stated the government’s commitment to invest on improving skills of Filipinos to improve competitiveness; to apply Science, Technology and Innovation in agriculture and the [service] industries; invest in improving research and development and intensify international cooperation in this area.(Lilian C. Mellejor/PNA)