Roque laughs off Trillanes tirade as Halloween joke
Incoming Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque did not throw hollow blocks but instead laughed off Thursday the tirade of Sen. Antonio Trillanes against him, saying he was apparently possessed by a bad spirit after he joined the Duterte Cabinet.
“Itong si Cong. Roque, nasama lang kay Duterte, bigla na lang parang nasapian ng masamang espirito,” Trillanes said.
(This Congressman Roque, he is suddenly acting like being possessed by evil spirit after joining the Duterte Cabinet.)
Sought for comment, Roque did not engage Trillanes in a word war even as he promised not to take it sitting down criticisms against him and the President.
“I think that’s in line with Halloween. So let’s leave it at that,” he said in his first Palace briefing.
Roque, who replaced Undersecretary Ernesto Abella, would formally assume his post on November 6.
On Monday, Roque gave a preview of how he would deal with critics of the administration.
“Binibigyan ko na po ng notice ‘yung mga walang hiya diyan na naninira lamang. Kung dati-rati hindi kayo nababato bagamat kayo’y nambabato, ngayon po maghanda na kayo dahil kung kayo’y nambato, hindi lang po bato itatapon ko sa inyo, hollow blocks,” Roque said in an interview with Communications Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson over the weekend.
(I’m giving notice to those shameless individuals who engage in slander. Beware now because your attacks will not go unanswered anymore. I will not only throw rocks at you – hollow blocks will also hit you.)
READ: Roque threatens to throw hollow blocks at stubborn critics
But on Thursday, he clarified his statement. He said his threat to throw hollow blocks at critics was not intended to the general public but a message specifically for the “Die-hard Duterte Supporters” or “DDS.”
Interviewed over ABS-CBN News Channel on Thursday, Roque explained that he was addressing Uson’s followers when the latter asked for his message to the DDS.
“I was addressing Mocha Uson. I was addressing the 5.5 million followers of the Mocha Uson blog, these are the DDS. It was not really intended for anyone else other than the DDS,” he said.
“(I was addressing) the Mocha Uson blog, not the general public. It was Mocha Uson interviewing me. I think that’s not clear to the public that they (media) used Mocha Uson video…,” he added.
Roque said he also made the remark to assure the DDS that he would defend Duterte from “unjust criticisms” even if he did not support the latter’s presidential bid in the last May 2016 elections.