Go still a SAP: ‘Special Assistant to the People’

Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go may be out of the official Malacañang team but he remains SAP — “Special Assistant to the People”.

Go said this was the new moniker he gave himself after he was deemed resigned as Special Assistant to the President.

The former top aide to President Rodrigo Duterte said he remains on the Chief Executive’s side as a volunteer to help in the latter’s day-to-day activities and attend to his needs until the official campaign period starts.

Sinabi ko na araw-araw akong maninilbihan sa kanya hanggang kamatayan (I have told him that I will serve him until death),” Go said in an interview on the sidelines of the inauguration of the Gaisano Grand Citigate Mall here on Friday afternoon.

Go said he still goes with the President as needed, and will remain a “volunteer” until someone replaces him.

“Trust and confidence are not something that can be passed on. Tumutulong pa rin ako in my own personal and private capacity (I still help in my own personal and private capacity),” he told reporters.

While the President has not yet officially appointed another SAP, Go said his former staff helps make sure the function of his former office is not hampered.

Asked about his probable replacement, Go confirmed there are already potential candidates. “Let us wait for the official announcement of the President,” he said.

Meanwhile, Go said Saturday he will push for the enactment of a law institutionalizing the Malasakit Center if given a Senate seat so that the health facility would continue to be operational even after President Duterte’s term ends in 2022.

Sa kanya ko talaga natutunan ang pagserbisyo na may malasakit sa sambayanan. Marami akong natutunan sa kanya kaya nakarating ako dito. Dahil na rin sa kanya, after 20 taon, nagpapasalamat ako na marami akong natulungan dahil sa kanya. Akin na itong naumpisahan at ipagpapatuloy ko kapag nasa Senado na ako (I learned doing public service from him [Duterte]. I learned so much from him that’s why I’m here. After 20 years, I’m really grateful that I helped a lot of people because of him. I have already started this and I will continue this in the Senate),” he said in a news release.

Go was able to put up 15 Malasakit Centers all over the Philippines. These serve as one-stop shops that hasten the delivery of medical services to indigent patients and provide access to free medicines. A fast lane prioritizing senior citizens and persons with disabilities (PWDs) is also available in every center.

Duterte’s closest aide for two decades also reiterated that he is just an ordinary citizen who wants nothing more than to continue serving the public by passing laws that will uplift their lives.

Once elected, Go said he will support the legislative agenda of Duterte, as well as push for his advocacy of improving the country’s medical services, especially those that address the needs of the poor.

Go credited Duterte for imparting a lot of lessons during their years together, especially on being loyal to the nation and to the Filipinos. (with PR/PNA)

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