Media interview of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte following the oath-taking ceremony of the newly promoted star rank officers of the Philippine National Police

Event Oath-taking ceremony of the newly promoted star rank officers of the Philippine National Police
Location Rizal Hall, Malacañan Palace


Q: [inaudible] are we going to talk about the Reed Bank [inaudible]…

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Yes, we would talk about what’s the situation in the China Sea or West Philippine Sea, I’d like to call it. So lahat na. Ah ‘yung — one is ‘yung bakit wala pa ‘yung — matagal eh, ‘yung Code of Conduct.

It’s becoming a very big issue. I do not want trouble for my country but whether we like it or not, however, on which side you are, it would not be good for my country to be in a state of violence.

So I’d talk about the arbitral ruling itself and then the Code of Conduct. And ‘yung other sides ‘yung mga marines resources, let us first be sure that we have the access. And I’m most interested in the exploitation of the natural resources.

Para sa akin, kung — if it’s without touching on the validity of who’s the real owner — it takes time, we can start the talks. But I’m most interested in the extraction of the natural resources.

Q: Sir, ‘di ba po sinabi niyo before, dalawang beses niyo na — April and October, and then President Xi said it could mean trouble. What if he says again that — ?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Then I will think about it. I will just keep it to myself first because at that stage nothing would really be a very significant development.

But once we have set the agenda, I’d talk first about jurisdiction, the COC, and the exploitation of the natural resources of my country since as far as I’m concerned, we own it. So that is my position. We still own what we are claiming.

Q: Sir, but what prompted you to decide that now is the time to discuss the arbitral ruling?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Well, good as any other time, but remember I have about two more years, plus plus months left.

It’s about time that we start talking. Panahon na. Ilang buwan na lang ako diyan.

Q: Walang specific incident, sir, that triggered you because — ?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  No, ‘yung ako — sabi ko, that was a marine incident or accident, if you may, after an investigation. But there was an incident.

Meaning to say, it happened there but that would not be a reason for us to be belligerent and start challenging them in their own turf kasi sabi nila kanila daw.

So they are resisting everybody or anybody’s presence there because they said that they own it. Now, if you insist that you own it and you start to implement the law, papayag kaya ang China niyan?

Ang China — the convenient way of answering it would — why are you imposing rules on us when we own the land, when we own the sea, and we are in control of that body of water?

Q: Sir, do we — does it mean sir that we accept the China position, hindi naman?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  No, because I — we cannot accept that. We are not allowed to accept that China owns it because of the arbitral ruling. And even before, we were claiming it. Pag-asa has been there for 74 years? Ah that’s — 1974 rather. We already claimed Pag-asa, occupied, that’s why there’s a base there.

But I’d like to assure also. I would not allow any foreign troops. I do not want trouble. Not the Chinese, not the Koreans, not the Americans, not anybody else except Filipino troops.

Q: Mayor, pag-uusapan niyo rin ba ‘yung sa nangyari sa Recto Bank?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Well, sabi ko nga… Well, one of the things. But the more important is DOC, the ownership, the COC plus ‘yung mineral na makuha diyan.

And they have proposed a 60-40. Okay na ‘yan para sa akin. But that could be a later topic if we have time.

Q: 60, Philippines?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Of course. Sixty — 60 in favor of our country.

Q: Sir, ‘yung sinabi niyo po na you will not allow foreign troops. Ang context po ba nito ‘yung statement ng US that they will position some of their arms?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  No, I will not allow it. Missiles?

Q: ‘Yun po ‘yung context noon?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  With nuclear warheads?

Q: What did you say?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  It is not… The reason is…

Q: ‘Yung context?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  It is not allowed under our Constitution to be placing nuclear weapons here.

Q: Sir, you’re responding to the US statement that — ?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  No, I’m responding to all, not only the Americans. Russians, China. I will not allow the deployment of nuclear warheads because it is not allowed by our Constitution and we — I do not want it.

Q: Sir, ‘yung COC, do you have a deadline?


Q: ‘Yung COC po, ’yung Code of Conduct, do you have a deadline within this year?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  I said that is why I’m going there. They are delaying it and it’s causing so many incidents and one day it will — one mistake, a miscalculation there and mahirap na bawian ‘yun.

Q: Mayor, sino ‘yung “they” na nagde-delay. Sino po ‘yung nagde-delay para lang klaro?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  It could be China. Nobody else is asking us to wait.

Q: Sir, we’ll let you go na. Ayaw na nila or you want pa?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Ah sige. Ano pa?

Q: Sorry.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Hindi makatindig ‘yung mga bisita na…

Q: Sir, ‘yun pong Congress ang sabi meron na namang pork, may allocation na naman ‘yung senators and congressmen, 200 and 100. That’s been declared unconstitutional by the…

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  I have not heard of it. When we come to the liaison between the Congress and the Executive department, we will bring this up.

What is the nature and dimension of that? Is it for the maintenance or for the committee hearings? Any hearing you have to spend. If you go out of the — to the provinces, you have to spend.

Q: Personally identified projects, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Wala. Wala pa. I said I’m going to ask them. Wala pa namang… We are still in the stage of preparating — preparing the budget, rather.

Q: Sir, ang — the Department of Health has declared a national dengue epidemic.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Yes. That’s why I’m in a quandary whether to allow Dengvaxia or not. Ako? I’d rather go on the side of science.

If nobody would believe me, still I would say that if there’s — if there’s anything there in the Western medicine and even itong mga herbal ng orientals, if it could mean saving people’s lives, I’ll go for it.

Q: You wanna use Dengvaxia again?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Walang — nakikita ko may epidemic eh.

Q: So yes?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  So ‘yung gustong magpabakuna… Kasi ang anak ko nagkaroon — dumaan ng vaccine eh. She’s — she had a vaccination.

Q: Is that a yes? Is that a yes, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Hindi ko nga pa malaman. I have to hear mga — yeah, yeah.

Q: But are you open, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE:  Yes, I am open to the use of Dengvaxia again. Maraming patay ‘yan. It’s an epidemic.

Now compare it with — vis-à-vis with those who died, I want to hear the words of the experts, doctors. And we have enough bright people here to tell us.

I do not need foreigners to — telling me. My own Filipino scientists and doctors would tell me what to do. I will be guided by their announcements.

Q: Thank you, sir.

Q: Thank you, mayor.

— END —

Source: PCOO-PND (Presidential News Desk)