Duterte to Gordon: Inciting to sedition? File a case and I’ll sue you too
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has threatened to file a case against Senator Richard Gordon if the solon will pursue the filing of a case of inciting to sedition against him.
During his taped meeting with Cabinet officials aired on Thursday, Duterte vowed to retaliate against Gordon if the senator will take legal action against him.
“Whatever is the stand of Gordon, this is my message: Do your worse and I will do mine. Idemanda mo ako ng sedition, idemanda rin kita at ako mismo ang maghuli sa iyo,” Duterte told the senator.
(File a case for sedition against me and I will also file a case against you.)
Without mentioning Duterte, Gordon earlier pointed out that attacking the Commission on Audit (COA) and the Senate is “practically inciting to sedition.”
“‘Do not listen to COA. Do not listen to the Senate. Do not go there. Nobody should go to the Senate investigations. The military, do not go there.’ That is practically sedition, inciting to sedition,” Gordon said, apparently echoing the President’s remarks.
To recall, Duterte earlier said the COA should stop flagging government agencies and publishing its report as they would taint agencies with “corruption by perception. He also said Cabinet members should secure his clearance first before attending the Senate inquiries.
But during Duterte’s meeting with his Cabinet members, chief presidential legal counsel Salvador Panelo reiterated that it was the Senate blue ribbon committee, which Gordon chairs, that is guilty of inciting to sedition and not Duterte.
“The remarks of Senator Gordon against the President on inciting to sedition may thus actually refer to his committee. It is them who have been restraining the Executive Branch to do its work, including addressing the present pandemic, by compelling key officials to a hearing which has been described by many as an investigation in aid of election,” Panelo said in an earlier statement.
The word war between Gordon and Duterte flared up as the Senate blue ribbon committee continues its investigation into the government’s procurement of alleged overpriced personal protective equipment in 2020. Duterte has maintained that the purchases were not overpriced and that there was no corruption involved.
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