Media Interview of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte following the Ceremonial Signing Event

Event Ceremonial Signing Event
Location Rizal Hall, Malacañan Palace

Q: Sir, what was your message to Peter Lim?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I believe that Peter Lim is still active whether he is in or out of the Philippines we do not know that for sure.

But the network and the money laundering of Peter Lim is very much alive. So I’m just reiterating my warning here na this drug problem is a national security threat. Meaning to say it can destroy the Philippines. And the orders are: destroy the enemy.

Q: Sir, when you said “harsher” drug war — harsher drug war…?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: A drug war is a drug war.

Q: You said, “harsher in the coming days.” What did you mean by that?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Yes, of course it’s a war. I’m not ordering the Armed Forces or the Police just to do a punitive police action or operation. That is not war.

Q: Sir, you warned Peter Lim earlier not to surrender alive.


Q: Why is that, sir?

Q: Paano sir ‘yon?

Q: Sabi niyo “you should commit suicide” sabi niyo po sa kanya?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Oo kasi ikukulong ko siya ng 200 years. Eh di ako sa kanya magpakulong — mag-suicide na lang siya.

Q: Sir, ano po ‘yung form nung more aggressive…?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Basta sinabi ko sa inyo do not f*** with my country about drugs. You will destroy my country and I will kill you.

Q: Sir…

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I could not be more emphatic and be clearer about it. Huwag ‘yang droga because it is an enemy which can cause destruction of a country or we render it a failed state.

Q: Sir, ‘yon pong sabi niyo it’s not just punitive action from the police, ano pong form ‘yung makikita natin in the coming days with regard to the drug war? Paano?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Basta sinabi ko I’m declaring war and I’ve raised it to the level of a national security.

When a national security threat it’s a game of self-preservation. Either I destroy you or you destroy me.

Q: Sir, ano ‘yung…

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Since I am the President then it behooves upon me to see to it that my country is safe.

Q: Sir, ano ‘yung i-expect natin sa “harsher drug war” ninyo? Are we expecting more operations, more arrests?


Q: More arrests, more… Ano po?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: A war. A war can take many forms. You just read the wars in the news — in the history books.

Q: Sir, is it going to be bloodier?


Q: Sir, NYC Chairman is suggesting na tanggalan daw ng scholarship ‘yung mga estudyante na nagra-rally. Your thoughts on this, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Ang mga estudyante…

Q: The National Youth Commission chairperson wants the government — is asking you sir to issue an executive order na i-revoke daw po ‘yung scholarship ng mga estudyanteng affiliated sa mga leftist groups, ‘yung mga nagra-rally daw po.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, let us be clear on this. I don’t know that kind of shade you are.

It could be — what a combination of scholarships…  But if you espouse to overthrow government, then you are committing a crime of rebellion. Now you become a part or member of the other larger groups whether it is — it has a name or a whatever, a loose federation or a grouping — then you become a member of that organized group. And that would be rebellion.

Says that rebellion, you arrest with the penalty of — well, no bail. But I will consider every one of them since there is no total outbreak of war yet. But they are these potential leaders. You are showing their faces, convincing the nation, and at this time they are all leaders.\

And when the time comes, I will arrest all of them and they will lose everything that government has offered them.

Q: Pero Mayor, in favor kayong tanggalan sila ng scholarship ‘pag nag-aral sila state-run universities?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: If they espouse — the very government feeding food on their mouth, they will lose that.

Q: Mere membership sir, is that enough?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Hindi, na-ano na ‘yan noon. There used to be a case that mere membership is… But, itong organized crime of rebellion, it can take so many forms.

Wala na ngayon so ang anti — ‘yung anti-subversion law. Fine. But if you join a rally and espouse, I said, the over — violent overthrow of government through armed struggle, hindi ko na…

Q: Can we be specific? For example sir ‘yung mga left-allied na mga organizations sa mga schools.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Basta if you espouse, I said, support the NPAs, espouse the destruction of government, I will consider you an enemy.

Q: Attending rallies?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Mere presence of one’s crime does not make you liable.

Q: Kung dissent lang, Mayor? Expressing dissent lang?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Wala naman kung dissent lang. If you disagree with my move, you disagree or you are not in — you do not find consonance in our decision.

But if you go and say, “let us go out, join the NPAs, support the NPAs, give food to the NPAs, money to the NPAs,” then you espouse the destruction of the duly constituted government.

Q: Sir, ‘yung mga generic na, “ibagsak ang gobyerno, ‘yung rehimeng Duterte,” iyong mga ganun, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, those are just expression. I need more overt acts.

Q: Sir, pabor ba kayo na ilabas ng DILG ang pangalan ng mga kandidatong sangkot sa droga?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Yes and yes. Or would you rather — hindi na talaga lalabas ‘yung pangalan nila? Galit ako sa droga.

Q: You would release the list — narco list?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Yes. It’s up to Año to decide on that. I do not interfere in his job.

— END —

Source: PCOO-PND (Presidential News Desk)