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For showing political will in addressing challenges in Manila, Mayor Francisco “Isko” Moreno Domagoso has managed to impress not only the people of his city but also Interior Secretary Eduardo M. Año.

Año on Saturday lauded Domagoso for clearing the streets in Divisoria and Quiapo of illegal vendors, cleaning the waterways of informal settlers, and implementing a stringent anti-gambling program.

“Manila is the showcase of the Philippines. It is the first place foreigners see when they come to our country, so I’m pleased that in the first weeks of his administration, Mayor Isko has already shown that the challenges of the city are not insurmountable and can be addressed with political will and commitment,” Año said.

He said the challenge now for the new mayor was to sustain his programs for the entire duration of his term.

Año took particular notice of the removal of informal settlers from esteros, or estuaries, and other danger zones.

“The city government’s cooperation in the Manila Bay Rehabilitation Program is crucial because some of the most heavily polluted waterways are in the City of Manila so we look forward to working with him closely in order to return Manila Bay to its pristine beauty as directed by President Duterte,” he said.

“We hope that the actions of Mayor Isko will inspire other local chief executives in other parts of the country to follow his example and to similarly show decisive leadership in bringing about change in their communities because that is what the people expect,” Año added.

Apart from Domagoso, Año also commended other young local government chief executives, like Pasig’s Vico Sotto and Makati’s Abby Binay, for showing robust political will in solving many of their cities’ problems.

“Our young leaders can count on our support to implement their good governance agenda. That is why the DILG is here. We are not only your supervisors, we are also your partners and mentors, your guidance counselors and your cheerleaders. Your success is our success as well,” Año said.

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