President Rodrigo Duterte issued this warning last week, reminding civil servants that they are paid salaries from taxpayers’ money to work eight hours a day.
Failing that, they are “swindling” the people, the President said.
“Technically, when you are not there to serve the people and you ask them to come back repeatedly, you are committing estafa,” Mr. Duterte said, addressing government workers in Davao City on Friday night.
He said government employees who had the habit of extending their lunch breaks to take a trip to shopping malls and stay away from work would face dismissal from service.
“The rationale of our job is, we are paid by the people to work eight hours a day… So if you refuse the people, you are not in your office… after lunch break you are in the malls, walking around… if that happens again, I will dismiss you,” he said, noting the exclusion of barangay officials who go out to the communities to do field work.
The government office should also keep a logbook of requests so the employees in charge could estimate the date when the documents would be ready, he said.
Citing a recent letter to the editor of a newspaper where the writer complained about being given the runaround in a government office, he said he wanted the concerned agency to explain its side.
“I will call the particular employee there as well as his chief to explain why they should not be dismissed from government service,” he said.
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