Media Interview with President Rodrigo Roa Duterte following the National Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Summit 2018

Event National Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Summit 2018
Location ASEAN Convention Center, Clark Freeport Zone, Pampang

Q: Hi, sir. Pia Gutierrez po from ABS-CBN. Sir, paki-detalye naman po sa amin what are you envisioning pagdating doon sa transition government if ever, sir, na maaprubahan ‘yung federal charter?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, I said kung maaprubahan ‘yung transition government, I am suggesting to everybody, to Congress, and to the Consultative Commission if they wish to, they can amend and make it a provision there that I will be co-terminus with the effectivity of the constitution — federal type.

Once it is implemented, they can I said provide a provision there that the Office of the President shall be declared vacant but you have to call for an election.

It cannot be a succession because I have no other agenda there except that I would like the Filipino to choose a new leader lalo na it is a new structure and I have been an official of the structure of type of government which has been since time immemorial, unitary.

Baka manibago sila sa akin at sanay naman ako ng unitary. They might want to get an experienced — sa official or tao who would have the competence and the enterprise to form a government structure — for a federal type of government.

‘Yan lang. I had — that is my partida, para ‘yang, “si Duterte, diktador.” Ay susmarya — maniwala… ‘Yan ang magiging diktador, ‘yan ang gusto ng ganun.

‘Yung mga nagsisigaw ng diktador, ‘yan ang mga taong may ambisyon. Wala nang ginawa kung hindi mag… They invent malice in their minds.

Or better still I will invite them here to resign with me. Or not really to resign but to agree to being — hindi naman dismiss but to cease. To cease being President and Vice President.

And I am asking Congress and I said the Consultative Committee. Wala akong ano diyan sa presidency.

Q: No more chance, sir, to reconsider your decision not to lead the transition government?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: No, no. Hindi naman decision, it’s a suggestion.

Q: Okay.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: They are free to accept it or not. But kung ayaw nila, ayaw ng tao, eh ‘di — because I am elected to serve until 2022, that would be the election year.

Pero sabihin na itong mga the noisy and the ambitious, and those who have really malice in their… ‘Yun sila — ‘yun ang pag nakatikim…

And these are the group, you know that were elected during the last administration. Lahat ‘yan sila served in government. ‘Yung iba sa Malacañan. At tanungin mo sa kanila kung ano ang ginawa nila while they were in power.

Now, sila ‘yung gustong bumalik.

Q: Sir, just a clarification. Maricel Halili po from TV-5. So does it mean, sir, that you were willing na maging transition leader basta it’s not beyond your term on 2022?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: No, I would rather not even during the transition. I would like to cease being President and somebody else take it over.

But if they can call a presidential election, madali man lang ‘yan. It’s a one-day affair. One balot, one name.

Q: Sir, on other issue. May we know, sir, what was discussed during your one-on-one meeting yesterday with Archbishop Valles?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Unfortunately, I was… There was this agreement that… I do not talk about it.

What I said there outside, doon sa auditorium was not about our talk. So I had nothing to do with it.

We were discussing some mode — modality of behavior. But definitely, that would not prevent me from just to say my truth.

Q: But is it true, sir, that you promised or you gave assurance to Archbishop Valles that there will be a moratorium with regards your statement about the Church?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Yeah, I am not attacking the Church. What I said that if you use religion as a format, and I was — I was not referring to any religion. Makita mo wala akong binanggit na relihiyon.

Kasi marami naman diyan ‘yung merong mga Christian, Evangelists, merong gusto akong kausapin. Dahil diyan, I cannot mention their names. But they wanted to see me.

But if it’s a matter of me asking forgiveness, forget it. As a matter of principle, I will not. And I can burn in hell if it is true.

Q: And, sir, what was the response of Archbishop Valles?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Hindi ko… Hindi namin pinag-usapan ‘yang “burning in hell”, that’s my spontaneous… Ako, I said, as a matter of principle, I will not.

I would rather lose the presidency, lose the honor, or lose my life. That could not be more clearer.

Q: Thank you, sir.


Q: Sir, good afternoon po. Joseph Morong, sir, sa GMA-7. Sir, clarify lang, kahapon daw po sa at the start of the Cabinet meeting, you told the Cabinet something with regard to ‘yung sa ransition government, something about your job being tired and all. We’re just trying to confirm?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Wala, sabi ko, you know why? We ended up at two o’ clock in the morning.

Q: Yes, sir.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Kaya nga sabi ko, this is a killing job. Is this what we are really here?

Ang sweldo ba natin dito, tama talaga sa pagod natin?

I slept — I have signed — I signed papers and I slept at six o’ clock.

Q: Okay. Sir, with regard to the transition period, ang gusto niyo pong i-elect is just transition president between 2019 up to 2022?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: That is up to —

Q: Congress?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: — Congress to decide.

Q: Okay.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Nandyan naman sa bicam.

Q: Opo.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: And of course the Consultative, out of respect, kila Justice Puno, sinabi ko na sa kanila kahapon din lang, “I’m willing to step down, call for an election, get a new leader, and go on with the transition”.

Q: Sir…


Q: Sir, kanina po yata nag-meeting na sila Chief Justice Puno and the decision was not only will your term be cut with also with the Vice President. So sabay daw po kayong mapuputol ‘yung…

PRESIDENT DUTERRE: Correct. But that would be I do not know when. I am suggesting an earlier date.

Q: Meaning sir, before 2019? Or as soon as you…?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: At the start of the transition government. If it is already assembled and it’s not shaky, it’s working, and it can go — the structure can be —

Q: Put up?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: — a platform for governance, eh ‘di walang problema.

Then by that time, I should go.

Q: Okay, sir, just one last would be nuance point ‘no. So sir, suggest —?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Ah walang… Wala… Wala… Hindi ako papayag na — a succession.

Q: Ayaw po ninyo? So new person, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Would you think that the other guy is better than…?

Q: So, sir, could be anybody ‘no?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Election eh. Oo. Maraming magandang lalaki diyan. Mamili lang kayo.

Q: Or babae, sir.


Q: Sir, si Archbishop — meron pong nangyari sa Cebu Archbishop? There was a person who tried to look for Archbishop Palma and then nung wala siya yata doon, he stayed on and then they called on the police. Ang long and short of it, sir, that person was killed. That person who was looking for Archbishop Palma was killed because he was in the premises of the Archdiocese.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I really do not know about that story why. If it has a connection with… Wala naman siyang ano.

He has no connection with me. Maybe something else. Was he a violent one?

Q: He was killed, sir. He was — that person, sir, was killed by a police because ayaw umalis.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Yes, I said was he violent? Was his behavior violent? Or was he armed?

Q: He was, sir.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Armed? With what?

Q: He was looking for the Archbishop.


Q: So…

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Hindi, hindi, hindi. Anong armas niya nung hinahanap niya si Archbishop?

Q: Sir, we don’t know yet. We have to get back with the details, sir. Sir, konti lang. So, sir, suggestion po ‘yung cut ng term. So if the people — number one in the plebiscite says no, and Congress on another level says no, okay lang po kayo stays on siyempre?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Bahala sila, sabi ko. I don’t really care. But my suggestion is they elect a president who will now reign over government at the start of the transition. That could be early 2019.

Q: Early 2019. Sige, sir. Thank you very much for your time, sir.

Q: Ah sir, Rex Remitio po, CNN Philippines. Kanina po si Vice President Robredo nagsalita na siya na willing na daw siyang pamunuan and i-unite ‘yung prospective opposition coalition. So ano po ‘yung reaction niyo dun?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Kung siya mag-presidente? Look, I will not resign because it will make her president.

My resignation is addressed to the people na para makapili sila nang gusto nila. Siya? I don’t think she can ever be ready to govern a country. Reason? Incompetence.

Q: Sir, can you elaborate lang po dun sa idea na incompetence?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I mean she’s not capable of running a country like this — Philippines?

Q: Tapos, ah sir, ‘yung lumabas na ‘yung bagong SWS survey and ah — ‘yung net satisfaction rating po natin, ah bumaba po to +45. So ano po ‘yung masasabi natin dun?


Q: Yes po, from +50 something to +45.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I do not care. Make it to 15. Wala na ako diyan. It does not interest me at all.

Basta ako, coast along na lang ako. I’m just — I’m just traveling along the coast. And with a new suggestion, since I am not popular anymore, Congress might decide to get a popular one.

You want a popular president? Fine. Good.

Q: Tapos, Mr. President, ano na lang po ‘yung magiging agenda ng meeting natin with Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Ah ‘yan ang hindi ko masabi. But it will have to do something definitely with terrorism and piracy, law and order.

Q: Paulo Marcelo po, GNN44 Pampanga. Mr. President, dito sa Clark po ginawa ‘yung ASEAN Summit last year po where we talked about one ASEAN, one market. Ngayon, ‘yung fear po nang marami sa mga MSMEs dito is ‘pag ginawang one market itong ASEAN ay ‘yung kanilang mga product ay ma-o-overshadow ng products sa ibang — ng ibang bansa na mas mura, cheaper, or better, even better products po. Paano po natin masisigurado na hindi ma-o-overshadow nga or ma-o-overpower itong mga produktong ito?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, we have to make the… Well, I would call the first sacrifice and that would be a competitive pricing.

There’s no other way to do it. This is a free enterprise. People would always get the best product and at the cheapest price. That’s a rule sa — in free enterprise eh. You are…

That is why in government, we cannot just impose our rule because this is a competition market. Market-driven tayo eh.

And so if it’s a market-driven, you always go for the best quality with the lowest price. That is the eternal equation, unchanging ‘yan.

So if there’s a demand, mataas ang demand, walang supply, mahal. If there is a lot of supply wala, hindi naman ma ano ang demand, naubos, then you go low. That is pure economics.

Q: Mr. President, other issue lang po. Ano po ‘yung opinion niyo dito sa privatization ng Clark International Airport po right now?


Q: The privatization of Clark International Airport.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, I don’t know. That has to be discussed. Nothing is final yet. It has to be the decision of Congress and the Cabinet. It’s always a joint effort.

No one in this government can say what will happen or what. You have to contend with the government itself because Congress is likewise there to protect the interest of the people and the money. Remember that it costs us money to build it.

Q: Thank you, Mr. President.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Lahat, okay na? Ikaw, ma’am? Ikaw bakit ayaw mong magta…? [laughter]

Pwede akong magtanong, tindig ka diyan? Anong station mo, ma’am?

Q: PTV po.


Q: Opo.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Ah taga-gobyerno ka pala kaya hindi ka nagtatanong sa akin kasi magkakampi tayo. [laughter] Ilang taon ka na, ma’am?

Q: 21 po.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Oh. Ngayon lang kita nakita, totoo lang. ‘Di ba?

Q: Pangalawa po. [laughter]


Q: Second daw, sir. Second time.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Ah baka iba siguro ‘yung nakita ko. Pero nice meeting you. Uwi ka rin doon sa opisina mo ngayon?

Q: Opo.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: May asawa ka na? Wala pa? Tumindig ka lang diyan, magtingin lang kami sa iyo. Hindi, hindi, binibiro lang kita.

Q: Thank you, sir. [applause]


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