Pampanga – Former Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go reiterated his commitment to promote the welfare of Filipino workers even as he vowed to support government programs that would encourage more investors to open businesses in the country and provide more jobs for Filipinos.
Go made the statement during his visit to a Michael Kors factory here, which employs thousands of Filipino workers, including many Aetas—indigenous people mostly living in mountainous areas of Luzon, including Pampanga.
“Papasalamatan ko rin po ang Superl Philippines, Inc.— nagbigay sila ng 14 na libong trabaho dito. Kasama po ang mga Aeta sa binigyan nila ng trabaho. Ako naman po ang pakiusap ko sa inyo magtrabaho tayo ng mabuti. Ipakita natin sa kanila na tayong mga Pilipino talagang masisipag at mababait,” Go said.
Go said he visited the factory upon the invitation of the owners as well as Pampanga Gov. Lilia Pineda and House Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.
The former SAP said he hopes other businessmen and multinational companies operating in the country would follow suit and employ indigenous peoples in their factories.
“Sana po sa lahat ng mga negosyante, sa mga investors, sa mga multinational companies po bigyan natin ng pagkakataon na magtrabaho po (ang mga indigenous people) lalong lalo na po yung mga Aetas natin, yung mga tao natin na galing sa bundok para naman po kumita sila at makapamuhay ng maayos at magkaroon po ng regular na trabaho,” Go added.
Go noted that Davao City, where he worked for almost two decades as top aide of then Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, has passed an anti-discrimination law to ensure everyone—including indigenous peoples—are treated equally and given equal opportunity, particularly on work opportunities.
In May last year, Go had provided medical and livelihood assistance to two Aeta women from Mabalacat, Pampanga and even gave them the opportunity to meet President Duterte in Malacanang.
Go said that if elected to the Senate he would work to protect the rights and promote the welfare of laborers.
“Importante po sa akin ang kapakanan ng mga manggagawa. Uunahin ko po, kung sakaling ako ay papalarin, uunahin ko po ang kapakanan ng mga manggagawa natin, interest ng mga workers po natin, mga Filipino workers po,” Go said.
But at the same time, Go said it is also important to balance the interest of workers and those of investors whose businesses would provide more job opportunities to our people.
He said he would support legislation, like the Ease of Doing Business law, meant to encourage more investors to come to the country.
“Kaya nga meron tayong Ease of Doing Business po para matulungan natin ang mga investors na makapag-apply na walang pahirapan sa proseso sa mga papeles at makapag-negosyo sila,” Go said.
“Alam nyo iyun po ang pinagbibilin ni Pangulong Duterte noong mayor pa siya ng Davao City. Tulungan po natin ang mga negosyante natin. Iyon po ang magbibigay ng trabaho sa ating mga kababayan dito sa lugar,” he added.
Go assured the factory workers that he and President Duterte would always be willing to address their concerns.
“Ito lang po ang masasabi sa inyo, ako po ang patuloy ninyong magiging tulay kay Pangulong Duterte. Sa abot ng aming makakaya po kahit ano po na pwede naming gawin sa inyo huwag po kayong mag-atubiling lumapit sa amin,” Go said.
As part of his legislative agenda, Go seeks to champion the cause of the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to increase the income of ordinary Filipinos. Among others, Go proposes to support MSMEs with more free business training, easier credit access with low interests and shared manufacturing machinery.
Go also vows to promote local industries, like the famous Marikina shoes, to increase the income of local communities.
The former SAP said that he takes it as his mission in life to help President Duterte serve the Filipino people.
“Minsan lang tayo dadaan sa mundong ito. Kung ano pong kabutihan ang pwede nating gawin sa ating kapwa gawin na natin ngayon dahil hindi na tayo babalik sa mundong ito,” Go said.