Secretary of the Interior and Local Government Mar Roxas encouraged leaders of different civil society organizations (CSOs) in Davao City to stop graft and corruption from creeping back and destroying the foundation of good governance established by the current administration under Daang Matuwid.

In a meeting with CSO leaders arranged by the Koalisyon ng mga Mamamayan para sa Reporma (KOMPRe) in Davao City on August 14, Roxas described graft and corruption as parasites that destroy the nation from within.

“Graft and corruption [were] eating us from the inside. No matter what we tried to do, we were always weak, we were always despairing,” he said.

Since the inception of Daang Matuwid, he said, the Aquino administration has demonstrated a good example in curbing graft and corruption, red tape, and other anomalies in government.

“Let’s go back to what is right… and what we did was we took [these parasites] away and now we have a strong nation,” he said.

“Certainly, we have come a long way. Certainly, we have accomplished so much and certainly, we know that our strength is because we went on the straight path, on Daang Matuwid, which why we’re all here today,” he added.

He said five years after instituting Daang Matuwid, a lot of corrupt officials were exposed, and government operations have become more efficient, serving the people honestly and diligently.

He added that the people who believed in Daang Matuwid in 2010 are now reaping the fruits of putting their trust in a government that truly serves the nation.

“We were all part of creating Daang Matuwid. We were all part of building, making it happen, defending it from those who don’t want it to happen, and we are all part of the success of where we are as a nation today. Thank you everyone for taking a chance in 2009 and 2010,” Roxas said.

KOMPRe officials in Davao pledged their full support to continue Daang Matuwid and committed their members, composed of CSOs from different provinces of Mindanao, to be vigilant in fighting corruption and shunning corrupt officials who will try to deceive them in the coming 2016 elections.