Palace: Recto Bank incident will ‘definitely’ not affect Duterte’s popularity
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang on Thursday expressed confidence that the Recto Bank incident will not affect President Rodrigo Duterte’s popularity.
Duterte has been met with fierce criticism in the past weeks for downplaying the ramming and sinking of a Filipino fishing boat by a Chinese vessel near Recto Bank in the West Philippine Sea last June 9.
He also drew flak for supposedly kowtowing to China’s expansive claim in the South China Sea by giving them access to the country’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ).
Asked if the government is confident that these issues will not affect Duterte’s appeal, Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo said: “Definitely.”
“Sinasabi nga ni Presidente, it doesn’t matter to me maski popular ako o hindi, basta ang gagawin ko, what I will do is I will perform my duty in the Constitution as directed to me, which is Section 4, Article ll, saying that his prime duty being the head of the government is to serve and to protect the people,” Panelo said.
“‘Hindi naman ito popularity game,’ sabi niya,” he added.
Duterte’s net satisfaction rating jumped six points for the first quarter of 2019, which remained within the “very good” range, a Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showed. (Editor: Katherine G. Adraneda)
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