Duterte: Roque threatened to resign, I said go
President Rodrigo Duterte revealed Tuesday that Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque threatened to resign after he was kept in the dark about the Chief Executive’s hospital visit last October 3.
Duterte admitted this after he mentioned Roque as one of the possible Cabinet members who will be running for the 2019 midterm elections.
“Kasi hindi ko man maintindihan. So I’m giving that margin of safety. Kasi sabi niya mag-resign siya because he didn’t know that I was in the hospital. So he was not informed,” Mr. Duterte told reporters in Malacañang.
“Hindi naman kailangan sabihin ko lahat eh. There are things which are limited to the immediate members of the family,” he added.
Duterte said he was willing to let go of Roque when the spokesperson informed him of his decision.
“And sabi niya, mag-resign siya. Sabi ko ‘di sige. Then immediately I – namili na kaagad ako ng replacement but I cannot tell you now kung sino sila,” he disclosed.
Roque earlier lamented that he was not informed about the hospital visit of Mr. Duterte, who underwent medical tests in Cardinal Santos Medical Center in San Juan City last week.
Roque last week said Duterte offered him a “nonexistent” position, apparently referring to the position of Press Secretary after the President wanted the revival of the Office of the Press Secretary.
But on Tuesday, Duterte said he was eyeing Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo to be his Press Secretary as some Cabinet members are eyeing to run in the 2019 midterm elections.
“Naipit nga si Roque. It’s not my fault, actually. Sabi niya tatakbo… tapos hindi tatakbo, tapos tatakbo. Ngayon, kung hindi siya tatakbo, hindi ko alam kung saan siya ilalagay,” Duterte said.
“I did my homework very fast. Nung sabi niya na hindi siya tatakbo – takbo. Namili na kaagad ako ng ano – ng… Siguro I’ll assign in temporary or in added function. Tutal tiga-assign man lang ‘yan si Sal Panelo. With all sartorial elegance, medyo maganda siguro tingnan,” he added. /kga
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