MANILA, -- Malacanang said on Thursday President Rodrigo Duterte met with at least 1,400 mayors in a "very intimate manner" last Wednesday night in Malacanang.
"What I can tell you is that it was a heart-to-heart talk between the President and the mayors," Presidential Communications Office (PCO) Secretary Martin Andanar said in an interview with Radyo Inquirer.
Andanar said the meeting was 'highly confidential' and held in three batches from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
"It is at the closed door meeting and the President just wanted to talk to the mayors in a very intimate manner," Andanar said, refusing to reveal the agenda of the meeting.
When asked if the President cussed the mayors allegedly linked to illegal drugs, Andanar said the President was just amplifying his message and the policy on illegal drugs.
"President Digong is very straight forward when it comes to talking to people specially officials. So what have been discussed of course, we are getting varied reports from different mayors also who were connected to the media," Andanar said.
"We know that this is the priority of the President and the enormity of the problem is huge so the President had to talk to them," he added.
Andanar said he will ask Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella to come out with official statement about the meeting with mayors.
In his previous speeches, President Duterte had shown a five-inch thick list of individuals including barangay officials, mayors, governors, lawmakers and policemen allegedly linked to illicit drug trades.
Andanar said the narco list by the President is "a developing list".
"In battling crime, you need the support of No. 1, the Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines, the public and the local government executives. So it make things easier. It makes the war more manageable if all the stakeholders are involved," Andanar said.
President Duterte said the drug menace has contaminated four million Filipinos, prompting his government to declare strong campaign against illegal drugs.
Based on the latest PNP data, the war on drugs yielded one million surrenderees, over 44,000 arrested drug personalities and death of 2,212 drug pushers and users in legitimate police operations. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency