The people of the internet praised Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto after he revealed that the city government switched hot cocoa brands for its annual Christmas packs, distributed from house to house, in order to save costs.
City officials swapped out Goya Marshmallow for the more affordable Swiss Miss chocolate, cheaper by a mere peso—a seemingly small margin but it makes all the difference when the city is doling out over 375,000 gift packs.
The mayor posted a copy of the city government’s purchase order, along with the products’ suggested retail prices, revealing that Pasig City saved P375,000 in costs.
In a Facebook post, Mayor Vico noted that they did not include rice in this year’s Pamaskong Handog (Christmas gift) packs to avoid discrepancies.
“Wala pong bigas ang Pamaskong Handog 2021; sa bigas kasi madalas nagkakaproblema kapag ganito karaming packs. Dinamihan na lang natin yung ibang items—mas mabigat to kaysa sa last year!”
(This year’s Pamaskong Handog does not have rice in its packs; we often run into problems with rice when it comes to these many packs. Instead, we increased the quantities of other items—this bundle is heavier than last year’s!)
The mayor also said that the Pamaskong Handog program was proof that it is possible to have governance where people are seen and treated equally, allies or not.
While praising a local government for its transparency is akin to praising a dog for walking on four legs, it’s hard not to admire honest governance in this political climate.