De Lima says Duterte Sona ‘insufferable,’ tells President to ‘just rest’
MANILA, Philippines — “Mukhang pagod ka na Ginoong Duterte. Magpahinga ka na lang.”
Senator Leila De Lima said this Wednesday as she called President Rodrigo Duterte’s fourth State of the Nation Address (Sona) “insufferable.”
De Lima, who was not able to attend the Sona as she is detained at Camp Crame over drug charges, said she was able to read the transcript of Duterte’s speech and slammed the President’s remarks on various issues in his speech.
“Duterte’s fourth State of the Nation Address was, as expected, insufferable. And I was told, so was his singing after the speech,” De Lima said in a statement.
The detained senator then listed her commentary on several issues that Duterte discussed such as corruption, reimposition of death penalty, and foreign policy.
Corruption and war on drugs
In his speech, Duterte said his fight against corruption and drugs would continue “with determination to pursue relentlessly what we have started at the start of my administration”, as he explained that drugs cannot be eradicated if corruption is prevalent.
“The drugs will not be crushed unless we continue to eliminate corruption that allows this social monster to survive,” Duterte said.
De Lima pointed out, however, that fighting corruption needs a comprehensive institutionalized approach, “supposedly with institutions that Duterte has undermined one by one, thereby demolishing the system of checks and balance and the rule of law.”
Further, De Lima said corruption cannot be fought by freeing convicted plunderers.
“Corruption does not stop by simply telling the plunderers to stop. Neither is it stopped by reinstating the death penalty. It is stopped by prosecuting and jailing thieves in government, instead of freeing them,” De Lima said.
“Even if Duterte forces a hundred public officials to resign, if he does not prosecute and jail a single one, it will not stop corruption. Neither does sending 60 corrupt Customs officials to Congress,” the senator added.
Another timely issue that Duterte addressed in his speech was the country’s foreign policy — particularly with the recent issues concerning the West Philippine Sea (WPS) and China.
Duterte said that he would be asserting the country’s sovereign rights over the WPS “in due time”, saying that doing so at this point would result in war.
“In the same way, a comprehensive independent foreign policy is not achieved by being China’s lapdog. One cannot defend the nation and its sovereignty by appeasing China and turning the country into its satellite State,” De Lima said.
“No amount of extensive narration of how Duterte’s dialogue with Xi Jinping convinced him to surrender and sue for peace – even before anything close to a war is declared – can justify his capitulation and treason,” the senator added.
De Lima said Duterte should “start being a Filipino” and side with his countrymen as she noted how the President is “obviously not the one” who can lead the country amid China’s aggression in the WPS.
“Nakakahiya ka Ginoong Duterte, sa harap ka pa ng Ambassador ng China nagkuwento kung papaano nabahag ang iyong buntot kay Xi Jinping,” De Lima said.
De Lima also slammed Duterte over his push to reinstate death penalty which the detained senator calls as a product of an “elitist, anti-poor and misdirected mindset” that doing so would result in greater crime deterrence.
“It also glosses over the fact that we have a deeply flawed justice system which is prone to errors, such as wrongful guilty verdicts,” De Lima said.
The senator further noted that Duterte “wants executions to be institutionalized anew in order to legalize the murder of the impoverished and marginalized,” adding that the President’s “plunderer friends” continue with their corrupt practices without being prosecuted.
“Those prosecuted by the past administration are eventually freed under his regime that has raised kleptocracy to new heights never seen before since the Marcos dictatorship,” De Lima said.
‘Bragging’ about Davao
De Lima also noted how Duterte is “no longer happy” as the country’s chief which was evident when he “asked the whole Philippines to emulate Davao.”
“Malinaw na hindi masaya si Duterte sa pamumuno ng Pilipinas, at tanging ang pag-uwi na lang sa Davao City ang nagpapaligaya sa kanya. Hindi niya nakayanan ang lawak ng responsibilidad ng Pangulo, kaya tanging pagbalik sa pagka-mayor na lang ang kanyang dinadaing,” De Lima said.
“Duterte is saying: ‘Ang corrupt ng Pilipinas! Pero ang galing ng Davao City!’ Ginoong Duterte, kung hindi mo napansin, tatlong taon ka nang Pangulo ng Pilipinas. Hindi ka na Mayor ng Davao,” the senator added.
The senator said Duterte should have just ran as mayor of Davao City as she called the President’s “whining” as being “like a bawling baby.”
“Malinaw naman na pang-mayor lang ang kaya niya. Pagdating sa pamumuno sa isang bansa, mas nauuna pa siyang magreklamo sa mga problemang hindi niya mabigyan ng solusyon,” De Lima said.
“Duterte whines and cries about the state of the nation like a bawling baby. A real President would know that he is the least of all people who has the right to complain,” she added.
Responding to Duterte’s remark that he will end his term fighting, De Lima said: “You cannot end your term fighting, if there is no longer any fight left in you. Mukhang pagod ka na Ginoong Duterte. Magpahinga ka na lang.” /je
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