Press Release
January 22, 2010

Noynoy to Cebuanos: To fight corruption,
we must have certainty of punishment

Liberal Party standard bearer Senator Benigno "Noynoy" S. Aquino III today spoke to more than 2,000 Cebuanos on the relevant issues facing the country during the Cebu Chamber of Commerce Presidential forum held at the Cebu International Convention Center.

When asked on his stance on how to break the vicious cycle of corruption in the country, he said it is only a matter of following the law, which is something that the current administration has failed to achieve.

"We have very good laws, but they are not being implemented," said Aquino, who is currently leading in all of the major national pre-election polls. "Kung may gumawa ng kasalanan, kailangan may certainty of punishment."

Aquino called for an improvement of the country's judicial system, citing the case of former Department of Agriculture secretary Jocelyn "Joc-Joc" Bolante of the million-peso Fertilizer Fund Scam, who evaded questioning for six years. He added that government employees must be rightly compensated so as to discourage them from stealing from the nation's coffers.

Answering a question by an eight-year old who was concerned about his fellow children living on the streets, Aquino stressed the importance of education and said the system of primary education must be improved and extended to 12 years. He told the child about his father, martyred former Senator Ninoy Aquino, who considered education the best gift one could give a child.

Also in attendance were five other aspirants for the presidency: Richard Gordon, Joseph Estrada, Gilbert Teodoro, Manny Villar, and Eddie Villianueva.

The presidentiables were given questions on infrastructure, climate change, and their personal qualities that past presidents do not have.

Aquino considers Cebu one of the most important and successful provinces in the country-a view shared by his mother, former president Cory Aquino, who started major projects in the province such as the Transcentral Highway and the Mactan Export Processing zones.

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