An open letter of congratulations to the President of the Philippines

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President Rodrigo Roa Duterte
Republic of the Philippines

Dear Mr President,

Firstly, I just wanted to take the time to personally congratulate you on your decisive victory in the recently concluded Philippine Presidential elections and of course inauguration earlier today.

I also wanted to personally apologise as initially, I was somewhat wary of your campaign and standing for election as a result of what I had heard in the press, as well as social media coverage of your campaign trail and press conferences. I was wrong. You are, I am quite sure, a strong leader, who will make an excellent President.

I am a British Citizen who happens to be part of a Filipino family. I have been married to a Filipina for nearly twenty years and have raised two British-Filipino children in the UK, always trying to respect and encourage Filipino values and culture.

I have visited the Philippines close to 40 times and have always been active in supporting Filipino culture and of course OFW's, both here in the UK as well as around the world. You see, I believe the world would be lost without the Filipino people. As you are aware, there are over eleven million Filipino workers worldwide representing the Philippines in a positive light and making personal sacrifices to help their families and loved ones as well as helping the country.

From what I have seen of your initial endeavours, I believe your intentions in your leadership is to help make the Philippines a better place for the people.

Your introduction of a curfew for children alone at night roaming the streets can only be seen in a positive light. Firstly, the children our are future in terms of education. Our children need proper sleep at night, so that they wake up refreshed for school. Also, sadly, I have heard of syndicates using children as a tool to beg, this I hope will now cease under your leadership.

I am also encouraged to see that you want to make the lives of our Overseas Filipino Workers easier by increasing the length of passport validity from 5 to 10 years. This would bring the validity of the Philippine passport in line with the U.K. This will help millions of Filipinos reduce their costs, as well as time in administration.

When my own family apply for Philippine passports, currently they have had to wait over a period of many weeks due to delays in the process. By increasing the validity to ten years, this delay will not have to be endured so often hopefully.

Finally, when I heard about your targeting of drug lords, I wrongly assumed that this would mean that anyone involved in drugs would face execution. I was wrong, it seems that your policy of shoot to kill if they end up in a gun fight with police, had already helped to target a number of drug lords which will help to reduce the amount of drugs on the streets, which I believe can only be a positive move. This in turn will help to make the Philippines a better and safer place to live for our families.

Congratulations once again on your election as President, you have my support and prayers.

I do hope to be able to personally meet with you one day, to be able to shake your hand and thank you for having the interests of the Filipino people at heart.

Mabuhay at maraming salamat po Sir,

With very best wishes,

Malcolm Conlan



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