MALACAÑANG yesterday defended President Rodrigo Duterte’s claim of a unified effort by the opposition Liberal Party, communist rebels and Senator Antonio Trillanes IV to remove him from the presidency by October.
Duterte on Saturday said the LP, Trillanes and the rebels were plotting for his removal, an allegation that was immediately denied by the LP and Trillanes who called the President “paranoid.”
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said Duterte’s accusation had basis because only the President has access to crucial intelligence reports.
“Alam n’yo naman ang Presidente, tanging siya lang ang may access sa lahat ng mga impormasyon, kasama na iyong intelligence information,” Roque said in an interview on dzRH radio.
“Pag nagsalita ang Presidenteng ganyan, meron pong basehan.”
Roque added Duterte’s political foes are raring to return to power. “Ang tawag ko po sa kanila ay talagang atat na atat na makabalik sa Malacañang na isang katotohanan naman,” he said.
“Pero ang tingin ko nga po, ang taumbayan ay nagmamatyag at dedepensahan ang Presidente, dedepensahan nila ang demokrasya dahil alam nila na ang mandatong ibinigay kay Presidente ay hanggang 2022.”
Last July, the military said they had found out a supposed plan by the communist insurgents to remove Duterte from office by October.
Communist Party of the Philippines founding chairman Jose Maria Sison, however, denied that the CPP had a three-year plan to oust Duterte, calling it a “fabrication” by the administration to justify a nationwide imposition of martial law and “carry out a fascist coup against the 1987 Constitution under the guise of pushing Charter change for federalism.”
Duterte has been pushing for a shift to a federal form of government as a means to address national economic and power imbalances.
He has said that he would quit his post as early as next year once the proposed federal charter is ratified by the public, insisting that the current unitary system of government has failed the people by keeping resources and power centralized.