Wed, 06 Jul 2022

SAN CARLOS CITY, Pangasinan - Vice President-elect Sara Duterte-Carpio on Friday fulfilled a promise to a student to stand as her mother's proxy at her graduation ceremony in a private school here.

Angel Mae Tayaba's mother could not attend the occasion due to her work as an overseas Filipino worker.

In her speech during the graduation rites posted on the Facebook page of former Movie and Television Review and Classification Board Chair Rachel Arenas, Duterte said during one of her campaign rallies in the province, the high school student gave her a letter requesting her presence in what the girl described as one of the most important occasions of her life as her mother's representative.

"Naantig ako sa sulat niya na hindi daw makauwi ang nanay niya (I was touched by her letter stating that her mom could not make it to her graduation). I said yes to the request and so here I am," Duterte said.

The Davao City mayor stood by Tayaba as the girl received her awards during the moving-up ceremony.

She also delivered an inspirational message to the students. "Make sure you are responsible enough to engage in adult matters. Never engage in (illegal) drugs because your plans will just be derailed. Focus on your own life, your own success," Duterte said as one of the pieces of advice to the graduates.

She also talked about mental health awareness as she urged young people to seek help in whatever problems they encounter.

"If you have problems, talk to your parents...or go to your guidance counselor...to a social worker or a specialist," Duterte said. She encouraged the youth to work hard to achieve success.

Tayaba's mother, Rona, expressed her gratitude to Duterte in a Facebook post.

"Nakakaproud lang talaga na ang isang ordinaryong kasambahay sa ibang bansa na kagaya ko ay makakausap ang totoo at tunay na may malasakit at pagmamahal na isang Vice President ng Republika ng Pilipinas Mayor Inday Sara Duterte-Carpio. Isang malaking karangalan sa akin bilang isang ina na tinupad niya yong pangako niya na attend bilang isang ina para sa moving up ng anak ko (I am so proud that an ordinary housemaid abroad like me will be able to talk to the true and real Vice President of the Republic of the Philippines Mayor Inday Sara Duterte-Carpio who has real concern and love. It is with great honor for me as a mother that she fulfilled her promise to attend as a mother for the moving up of my child)," she said.

Rona and Duterte were able to talk online, and the former shared a screenshot with the country's incoming Vice President on social media.

Residents of Pangasinan were delighted over the attendance of Duterte at the ceremony. (PNA)

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