Duterte to fight off ouster try
He may say that he does not need the presidency, but President Duterte would not give up his post without a fight either.
Mr. Duterte said he was not brushing aside reports of a supposed ouster plot against him.
Recent reports linked former US Ambassador to the Philippines Philip Goldberg to the ouster plot, though the United States had denied this.
Asked in a television interview if he was taking seriously the reports of a plot to unseat him, Mr. Duterte replied: “In the sense that I may be looking at it as a possibility, yes.”
He said he was not desperate for the office, but he has a job to fulfill and would fight for it.
“If you say ‘You’ll oust me,’ probably I’ll give you a good fight. You’ll get a bloody nose. That’s for sure,” he said.
He told those who want him out that he intended to honor his contract with the people.
“This is my message to the United States and to everybody, to those out there on the streets, and for those who are demanding my resignation: ‘You know, I feel that I have to honor the contract with the people,’” he said.
On allegations of Goldberg’s involvement in the ouster plot, Mr. Duterte said many US ambassadors were not just diplomats but also spies.
“The ambassador of a country is the number one spy. But there are ambassadors of the US whose forte is really to undermine the government,” the President said.
Mr. Duterte said this was what happened with Goldberg in Bolivia, from which he was expelled for undermining the country’s president.
Meanwhile, US Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim met with House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez to put to rest a report on an alleged plot to unseat Mr. Duterte.
Refuting the existence of a “blueprint” to oust the President, US Embassy press attaché Molly Koscina told the Inquirer that the ambassador decided to personally meet Alvarez on Thursday “to categorically deny the allegations.” —WITH JEANNETTE I. ANDRADE
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