Remarks of His Excellency, Jose P. Laurel, President of the Republic of the Philippines, on the occasion of the induction into office of the officers of the National Commodities Procurement and Distribution Corporation, Manila, June 28, 1944.

GENTLEMEN:

You have accepted this position without expecting any material benefit or compensation from the Government. That speaks very highly of you, and it serves as an example of the willingness—not of all, perhaps, but I venture to say, of many Filipinos who want to enter the service of this Government solely for the purpose of helping give relief to the suffering masses of our population and tide them over to better times.

This is very encouraging to me. It gives me a bright outlook; the conviction that we have not entirely lost that spirit which is so essential and so vital to the life of our nation; and the assurance that our younger people will have a chance to take up the work which we have begun and reach the goal that we have set for ourselves; namely, the establishment of a government of Filipinos, by Filipinos, and for Filipinos.

Our problem is to save the nation from, and to help it survive, hunger and starvation and the other difficulties brought about by forces beyond our control. I am pleading with you to help me, our government, and our people.

That is why I have created this agency. It is an organization primarily intended to help our people in their struggle for existence and survival by the proper procurement and distribution of the prime necessities of life. This organization may accomplish its purpose, or it may not be able to live up the expectations of our people. But whatever the result may be, our people will have no cause for complaint if you are fair to them, if you are honest to them, if you show them by your conduct and behavior that you are actuated by no selfish interest or personal expediency.

You have, like the members of the Economic Planning Board, shown unusual civic spirit by expressing your desire not to receive any compensation. We must remember, however, that most of the people in the Government service are receiving compensation; and it does not necessarily mean that only those who receive no compensation truly serve our Government and our people, while those who receive compensation are mercenary and selfish. For this reason, I have asked Secretary Sabido to find a way by which all of us could be placed on the same level.

Gentlemen, allow me to express once again the appreciation of this Administration, in the hope that through your efforts, personal sacrifice, and honest performance of duty, we may be able to help our people in some tangible and palpable way, or at least make them feel that no stone is being left unturned to serve them and to solve their difficult problems.

Source: Office of the Solicitor General Library