Put me last in surveys, Duterte tells pollsters
DAVAO CITY, Philippines—Mayor Rodrigo Duterte’s reaction to the results of the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey that had him leading the presidential hopefuls, seemed to again showcase his contrarian character.
“I will ask Pulse Asia and SWS to put me last [on their list]. That is my request,” Duterte told reporters on Friday night.
“If God wants me there (as President), I will be there even if I am in the 10th spot,” the mayor said of the survey that recently had him on top, with a 38-percent rating.
Critics however criticized the survey for its supposed misleading question that contained Duterte’s name.
Saying he did not care about tradition and would do things his way, Duterte said he would have his oath-taking in Malacañang instead of the Luneta should he win.
“If I win, there will be no expensive oath-taking. I will have it inside the Office of the President in Malacañang, invite just a few people and go on television to address the nation,” ’Duterte told reporters on the sidelines of Friday’s award rites for top Taguig City taxpayers.
“I do not care about tradition, I will do it my way, and then I will call the police and the military to stop crime immediately and wipe out illegal drugs in 60 days,” he added.
Nothing wrong, immoral
Duterte also defended his fraternity brothers in the Supreme Court who were reported to have asked another “brod” to withdraw from the presidential race to give way to him.
“There was nothing wrong and immoral about fraternity brothers talking to another fraternity brother. You do not deprive a person [the opportunity] to communicate [with] another person, especially a fraternity brother,” he said.
As for the Philippines’ territorial dispute with China, Duterte said he would “start negotiating with China and conduct bilateral talks with them because the problem is like a sore thumb sticking out every morning. I will not wait for the Americans, Japan and others when nothing moves,” he said.
Talks with rebels
Duterte, who openly opposed the Bangsamoro Basic Law and espouses federalism instead, said that early in his presidency, he would conduct talks with the Muslim Filipinos and the New People’s Army to have peace in the countryside.
Asked about measures he would put in place to protect human rights under his presidency, Duterte turned evasive, describing the human rights issue as “vague.”
“The human rights issue is really vague. It’s one-sided. Why can’t I hear complaints on human rights when a policeman is killed? There are no extrajudicial killings. My instruction was, if the suspect becomes violent and their life is in danger, then kill the criminal,” said Duterte, who admitted to killing criminals in previous interviews.
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