Irate Duterte takes critical Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism to task

April 07, 2019
Rodrigo R. Duterte

PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte came to the defense of his family during a speech on Saturday after the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) published a report on the allegedly unregistered law firm and undisclosed business interests of his family members.

“Ngayon, tinitira kami ng mga anak ko, all about lawyering. Ano ba namang pakialam nila na what happened to my law office?” Duterte said during an event in Iloilo City.

“Makita mo ‘yung utak ng mga investigative journalist... Binabayaran ‘yan kung ganoon kalaki. Pati nung lawyering ko, at saka yung... motorcycle shop,” he added.

In its report published Thursday, the PCIJ said the Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) of the President, Sara, and former Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte showed “big spikes” while they were in public office.

Duterte blasted the report, emphasizing that he and Sara were both lawyers by profession.

“Yang publish nila na ‘yung mga law firms, abogado ako. Pinaghirapan ko ‘yan, natural i-display ko talaga ‘yang pangalan ko,” he said.

“Kasi raw hindi na ko nagpa-practice, dapat wala yung mga pangalan namin ni Sara. Paka-ulol naman ninyo. Sinasabi lang namin ‘yan na abogado kami. Why, is there anything wrong of the freedom to express yourself? Tapos kung anong ilalagay mo diyan sa prohibition... kalokohan,” he added.

Duterte emphasized that he remains focused on two things: maintaining law and order in the country and ridding the government of graft and corruption.

“Huwag na kami kasi, kami, what we earned outside is none of your business actually. ‘Yung may mga negosyo kami, mga law office kami — what the goddamn sh*t?” he said.

The President also blasted “dilaw” (yellow) personalities over the issue about his wealth.

He shared that he has been living with his mother who provided for him for a long time and that she had left him some money.

“Yung mga dilaw. All the time, I was with my mother. Maski na noong mayor na ako, ang nagpapakain sa kin ang nanay ko. ‘Yung nanay ko ang may pera. ‘Yun ang nanay ko, nagiwan ng pera ko sa amin,” he said.

“Pero kung magkano, eh bakit sabihin ko sa inyo? SALN? Hm! Hindi naman ninyo pagod ‘yun... bakit ko ilalagay sa SALN? Wala akong bayad sa bahay, wala akong bayad sa kain... libre lahat, pati mura,” he added, drawing laughter from the audience.