Speech of President Rodrigo Duterte during the 9th Belenisimo sa Tarlac 2016 Grand Awards Night
Robinson’s Athletic Field, Robinsons Mall, Tarlac City
11 December 2016
Kindly sit down. Thank you.

Dra. Isabel Suntay, the co-founder of the Tarlac Heritage Foundation; nandito po si Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, the Department of Defense; General Año, kaka-take oath lang niya as the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines; the men and women of the Philippine National Police; winners and participants of the 9th Belenismo contest; local government employees; my workers in government; beloved countrymen.

Christmas is actually a time for deep thoughts, ponder on things about our country. Ako po’y isa lang ang tuyo ko ‘yung tumakbo ako ng pagka-presidente, I had only one objective, my desire is really to get peace for the land.

Iyan ho ang totoo because early on, I noticed that nobody was talking about Mindanao. And sadly, it’s the most troubled land in the Philippines except for few skirmishes here and there. Mindanao has always been a land of violence. Kita mo naman sa Jolo.

And so when I was looking at the platforms of — ‘yung tumakbo noon. I noticed that Mindanao was out of the issue.

So, medyo iniisip-isip ko, ganito ‘yan eh. Now that I have won, I go to every camp of the military and of the police, at ‘yung iba dito, especially kayo, the early beginnings of the insurgency, the NPA, Communist Party of the Philippines.

Alam mo po, I… We are aching for peace. Kaya I went out of my way to initiate talks with everybody who was at war with government. Noong nanalo ako kinausap ko ‘yung mga komunista at sinabi ko, ‘look we have been fighting for 45 years. You add another five and it would be 50 years of an insurgency. Wala naman tayong nakuha except the lives lost.’

Iyong mga sundalo ng NPA, pati sundalo ng gobyerno. Of course, ang mga taga-gobyerno medyo may reservation sila, ‘yung iba naghihinakit. But in the military camp I always say, you have to understand that we are fighting our own countrymen. It’s blood of the Filipino.

Kaya ‘yung kanta dito na mag-isa lang ang lahi. And so with the Moro of Mindanao. They started at almost at the same time. I think ‘yung Moro insurrection started in Cotabato in 1972. A full-blown revolutionary movement. Ganoon rin.

Sabi ko sa kanila, ‘look Nur Misuari, brod, kalian pa ito matapos? Ngayon nandito na tayo, magkaibigan tayo, why don’t we seize the moment and talk?’

At sa awa ng Diyos naman si — because of the Zamboanga siege, he was in hiding. There’s a warrant for his arrest. And I told government, lahat ng pulis pati military, and all I said, ‘look, if you do not allow Misuari to come out from the forest to Sulu, we’ll never get to know where.’

Alam mo, sabi ko, ‘ganyan lang ‘yang taong ‘yan, but we need to talk to him’. Ang sabi ko, ‘pag namatay ‘yan at hindi nagkakaroon ng’ — Nur, of course, seeking treatment and he will die, we’d always get the blame for generations.

He may be old but Misuari actually is an icon sa mga Tausug, pati Sama tribe, pati ‘yung Yakan. He’s an idol and he’s name is almost sacred sa mga matatanda.

At we have to talk to him. Sabi ko, let him out, I will just talk to some people. Palabasin siya and hayaan mo na lang. We will not or cannot detain him in our prison because if he dies in our custody, forget about talking peace. It will inflame the entire Moro people in Mindanao.

And I was able to talk to the MI. We are on talking terms. And we have prepared an agenda, the modality kung papaano namin… We are left with the extremist, ‘yung Maute, but they are few but very vicious.

And they say that they are connected daw with the Abu Sayyaf and, of course, ‘yung ISIS. It’s scary but we have to defend our territory and the Filipino and the sovereignty. We cannot afford a dismemberment of…

I will never, never allow my country during my time to be fractured. I will go out of my way and talk to whoever who wants to talk. Iyan ho ang philosophy ko.

That’s the reason why I’m here. I do not think that I would reach this place during the campaign. But, I am doing it for you, for your children, and for the country.

Wala akong ibang hangarin. I assure you. Ibigay ninyo ang federal system. Ibigay natin sa kanila. Short of a federal system will — cannot appease the Moro people.

Sabihin ko sa’yo, this will last forever. Ang hinihingi lang nila a measure of autonomy is the federal system. Payag ako niyan kasi federal the government is run by the prime minister and the Cabinet actively the members of parliament also.

That’s what they want because they have a higher form of autonomy. State- state or region by region kung anong gusto ng Pilipino. But we have to grant him the concession.

Alam mo, bago dumating si Magellan sa Mindanao, sa Pilipinas. Islam was already thriving in Mindanao and Sulu for 100 years. Sila were part of the Srivijaya empire. But they were conquered by the Spaniards kasi sila ‘yung may gun powder which are very alien to everybody there. Takot ng mga ganon.

And so easily, with the swords and all, they conquered the Philippines hanggang Luzon. But in Jolo, in Mindanao, may poste sila eh. Ang poste nila Islam. So they fought the Spandiards, they fought the Americans, and they are still fighting us because they think that they are the lackeys of the Americans.

Sabi ko, ‘no we are not’. And they hate to see foreigners, troops in Mindanao. Galit sila because they think or they believe that the government of the United States is using us, our soldiers, to kill them, which is absolutely garbage.

Eh ako nga ano… Hindi ako papa… Ako papasunod-sunurin mo ng– nakita mo na kung magmura ako. Wala akong pinatawad, lahat sila.

Well, I have also because, you know, you have to understand me. Maybe you cannot understand me now, but later, in a few years, if you think about it, you’d understand my reaction.

Kasi parang pinapalabas tayo na patay-gutom na tao. It’s an idiom actually of the Visayas. I don’t know if it’s still the same with you. Parang patay-gutom tayo kung magsalita sila.

Kaya nabuwisit ako. Ayon, nakatikim sila ng isang katerbang mura. Okay lang, eh gusto ninyo eh. Sabi ko, we will never… ‘I assure you that we are an independent nation. I will never, never allow somebody higher than us dito. It’s gonna be the Filipino who runs this country.’

Now, I hope that itong sa Mindanao. I talked to Murad. I’ve talked to the MI, MN, si Nur Misuari. It’s kind of a tardy thing to do for the moment. But let us just hope that everything turns out to be all right.

Ang gusto… Wala talaga akong…Kung ibigay ‘yan ngayon, if there’s peace in Mindanao… I assure you, ‘pag meron ng federal, ang term ko is six years. But if they can craft the federal system which will provide for a strong president, I will step down even if it’s less than six years.

If they can craft whatever body, constitutional convention or constituent assembly by Congress, in two, three years, four, I will not wait for the six years.

I’m giving you my word. Believe me. I’m going to step down and retire. Tingnan ko lang ‘yung election. I will supervise the election. I will guarantee that the will of the Filipino people will be preserved.

‘Yan ang garantiya ko sa inyo. Basta may bagong election. I will see to it and you will get it, a clean and honest election. Sigurado ‘yan.

Ngayon dito sa… I’m getting a lot of flak, criticism and all. I can understand. I can understand the church. I can understand the libertarians. I can understand the bleeding hearts. Pero, please allow me a certain amount of, you know…

There are four million drug addicts. The sheer number we would have never known kung hindi ako nanalo pagka-Presidente. In Davao, it was already a severe problem. And I, you know, sabi ko, I cannot allow the criminals to overrun the city.

We cannot progress and develop unless there is peace in Davao City. And so, sa awa ng Diyos, by the grace of God, we’re able to hit nine growth rate. That’s the highest in the country. And only because naglipatan na lahat doon, pati mismo, not only business, not only investors, pero ‘yung young married Filipino couples na Cebu, taga-rito. Nag-settle down doon to run—Kaya ang Davao may middle class.

Wala masyadong ano — ‘yung unemployed sa Davao. Rather sa buong Pilipinas, we have lost also the — ‘yung mga plumber, ‘yung mga carpentry, ‘yung mga electrical kasi nagpuntahan doon sa Middle East.

We are left with guys na medyo kulang and that is why itong contractual workers must be stopped. Kasi they cannot… We spend for the TESDA. Tinuturuan natin para electrician, carpentry, plumber, whatever expertise that you want to be into.

Then if you employ them only for four months, three months, they’d get another job. Hindi na carpentry not in the line for which he was taught and graduated from.

So wala tayong, even to say, that to send them to, kasi experience is three years, four years. Pag in-endo-endo mo, patay ang Pilipino. That’s my argument against contractualization.

So kailangan ang Pilipino talaga mauna. If it means a, maybe, if you’re earning 40 billion a year, you invest about five. If you’re earning about 10, two. Kasi bigyan mo talaga sila ng steady security of tenure plus the all the benefits that a worker should get.

I am not ready to mag-back out diyan. No, it has to stop because it is not fair to the people.

Dito sa drugs, balikan ko na lang. Patawarin na po na ako ninyo talagang…Hindi ako pwedeng mawalaan ng momentum dito.

We will, I will address the problems of extrajudical killing. It is not our job. Maniwala kayo. Even before the elections. Please look back in the hands of time and you would notice that marami ng nagpatay-patayan.

And you must remember that there are about six or seven, eight generals that I fired. I am not saying that they did a cleaning job pero I do not allow extrajudicial, ‘yung nakaluhod. Galing ako ng kampo. Nagpakita muna ako sa sundalo pati sa tropa, sa mga opisyal. We do not do that. It’s a dirty job.

At saka para kang hindi lalaki. Talian mo, balutin mo, it’s a form of torture ‘yung binabalot mo ng plastic. Hindi trabaho ng pulis iyan pati sundalo. Bakit mo balutin eh ‘di patayin mo na lang? We are not producing mummy. (applause)

Hindi ano, hindi totoo. Pero as I said, this is a matter of survival for my country. I am really very sorry to all. If I have to say, hindi naman I am sorry for what I’ve — for the decision. But I am sorry for those na tinamaan. Simple lang ito. Huminto lang kayong lahat sa droga tapos na. Wala na ako. (applause)

Now, kung sabi ninyo na you need medications, I was talking to the generals kanina, sabi ko, ‘I am willing to spend another one billion.’ Wala pa naman ako kasing rehab.

You know I entered the presidency midterm. I am operating on a budget that was prepared by Aquino. Kaya dito sa budget na ito walang contingency fund to answer for itong challenges ngayon na lumabas sa — puro zombie na lining up in front of the police and the barangay. And so it was…Hindi ko talaga alam. When I started to squeeze everybody in the law enforcement, nakita ko ‘yung almost, God, four million. It is…Sabi ko, it’s an issue of country.

‘Pag ka bayan ko na, you know, if we meet in one corner and the issue is bayan, my country, of course, kayo — sorry na lang. Because I am trying to preserve the Filipino youth. And because…

That was my sloganeering in Davao. And it is not a crime to say: ‘Pag sinira mo ang siyudad ko, papatayin kita. ‘Pag sinira mo ang mga anak naming, gawain mong gunggong, papatayin talaga kita. Walang isyu iyan.’ (applause)

Kaya ang sa inyo kung medisina lang, maghanap ako ng pera, I’ll scrape the bottom of the barrel, and I will look for…Medisina, I will give the DSWD, we have a good secretary there. She is a leftist, si Taguiwalo. She was in prison for about eight years, Martial Law. She is very strict so I am quite comfortable giving large amount of money. Kasi ‘yung una meron na kayo dito. I released one billion sabi ko, ‘ibigay mo, punta lang kayo sa DSWD, social workers, I released one billion to answer for ‘yung mga reseta na walang pera ang Pilipino.’ (applause) Maski sino, all over the country.

‘Pag wala pa maghanap pa ako ng pera basta this Pasko, you can have your medicines. Reseta, may doktor, punta ka sa DSWD at ibibigay sa iyo ‘yung medisina mo. (applause)

Now ito, I am willing to spend and I said — meron pa ba? I am targeting one billion for ‘yung mga tinamaan na ‘yung tranquilizers nila, kasi pag nag-ganun na iyan, he use some sedatives, I can…Habang may pera pa itong taon na ito, bagong budget na next year, doon kayo manghingi ng mga sedatives ninyo, supervision ng government doctors.

Wala akong…Ayaw kong pumatay. Nasasaktan ako ng pumatay ng Pilipino. Ayaw ko, pareho tayo. Do you think I enjoy the ‘yung mga…Tapos sabihin niyo nakatali ang amin? Hindi ka pulis diyan, hindi ka sundalo pagka ganun. Kayo-kayo ‘yan diyan nagpapatayan. Ang masakit pa, ‘yung mga big time nandun na sa labas. Tapos they operate the shabu industry dito sa telepono. Diyan ako nasasaktan. Diyan talaga ako na…

Kaya ‘nung makita ko ang mga bata na alam naman ninyo paranoia. Ilang pamilya…Everyday iyan, magtanong ka sa pulis. Sinusuntok ang tatay, hinahampas ang nanay ng cellphone, mukha. Ganun eh. They were creating a new monster out of our sons and daughters. Diyan ako galit.

Now, by the sheer number it becomes a death threat of national security. Kasi kung rarami iyan nang rarami nang rarami, saan tayo pupunta? And so what can I or what will be my answer at the end of my term? That I allowed for the Filipino people to go crazy? Iyong batikos nila sa akin tama iyan. Hindi ko naman kasi masabi na akin — amin iyang trabaho o hindi. Kasi ang pulis ang order ko kasi sa pulis ganito, pati sa military, hanapin mo sila, arestuhin mo kung kaya pa, pagka lumaban at may armas o anumang hagiban, that could place the life of the police or military man, pati siya madadamay sa kamatayan, unahan na ninyo. That’s my order. (applause)

Alam naman ninyo ‘yung mga paranoia, every addict may ano talaga iyan, kung hindi knife, may baril. Sanay ako…I have been mayor for 23 years sa Davao. Naging piskal ako for almost 10 years. Naging congressman ako. Alam ko ang trabaho ko.

But, you know, somehow it’s — nagta-taper off na. Maybe in the fullness of God’s time, he would help us, then meron tayong kapayapaan talaga sa Pilipinas. I am just trying to be a Filipino worker, period. Hindi ko kailangan ‘yang mga…

Hindi nga ako lumabas ng Malakanyang kasi ‘pag lumalabas ako ng Malakanyang diyan sa Maynila, if I get to accept speaking engagements, I create a monster sa traffic kasi ‘yung dadaanan ko every kanto sarahan iyan ng pulis. Nahihiya ako. (applause) Nahihiya, tinitingnan ang balahibo ko na…

Kanina ‘yung mga bata gusto kong batiin eh ‘yung sinasakyan ko hindi mo mabuksan. Hindi ko rin marinig kung ano ang pinagsisigaw ninyo kasi para kaming ulol doon sa loob na ang kakapal ‘yung…It’s a deafening silence kaya ayaw ko pero pinipilit nila ako. Kaya sabi ko, ‘patay?’ Matakot kang mamatay? Lahat ng tao mamamatay. Kung mamatay ako nandiyan naman si Leni. Anong problema ninyo? Kaya may Vice President tayo eh. Totoo. Nandiyan naman si Leni. O di…Hindi ganun iyan.

Madalas lang akong umuwi sa Davao. Kasi huwag kayong magkumpiyansa diyan sa “Ikaw” na kanta. Napasagot ko diyan tatlong babae ha. (cheers) Isang matanda, hindi masyadong matanda pero may edad na, tapos dalawa talagang — ‘yung isa hiwalay man sa asawa, okay ‘yon.

So, I like the rapport between the military and pulis pati kayo. Pambihira ho. I’d like to congratulate lahat connected Belenismo especially Dra. Suntay. (applause) Magkakaiba-iba ho ang ano. But we have it in Davao but it’s always mixed. Kasi doon kapag may sunog, ‘pag magtulong ang siyudad tapos bigyan ulit ng mga materials to build a new house, I see to it that ito Moro, ito Tagalog, ito Maranao, ito Tausug, ito Bisaya. And I will always to say, ‘you mix’. Sa Davao iyong mga Moro doon, wala namang problema.

Iyong mga terorista nanggaling sa labas. And because, one, they are trying to protect. I do not know but drugs and that makes it doubly worse for them, hindi talaga ako papayag. Mamatay na kung mamatay hindi ako papayag na masisira ang bayan ko sa panahon ko.

Paano ako magharap ng…I mean, ako, ang lola ko Moro, Maranao, ang tatay ng nanay ko Chinese, Lam. Iyong si — ‘yung g**** ‘yan pinaaresto ko. Sabi, buti’t nakaalis siya talagang bigwasan ko siya doon sa…You are using a one percent panahon pa ni Cory and he is nagpa-parlay siya ng dokumento. Samantalang ‘yung iba 10 percent, 9 percent tapos ikaw one percent. And he talks as if most of the officials are in his pocket. Kung magsalita…Kaya nung narinig ko sabi ko, kaya tinawagan ko ang NBI, ‘arestuhin ang p***, lecheng iyan.’ Babalik daw siya, sabi ko, ‘Sige, balik ka.’ Magbayad daw siya. Eh ‘di bayaran mo lang. Ako wala akong problema. Sundin mo lang ‘yung batas, magbayad ka lang sa tamang — walang corruption. I will not allow.

Ngayon, 8888. Maglabas iyan every morning sa TV — sa PTV. Itong si Mayor Duterte kumikilkil daw sa akin ng ganitong negosyo. Kasi sa siyudad ko three days lalabas iyang permit mo. Ako noon as mayor, nag-apply ako ng railway for Davao. Alam mo ilan ang inabot diyan sa NEDA? Naging Presidente na lang ako nandiyan pa ‘yung application kaya sinira ko sa harap nila. Kaya ngayon lahat ng departamento ke ma-defense, ke police clearance, three days, ang department one month. Pag hindi mo masunod iyan tatanggalin kita. Wala akong problema sa kaibigan, marami akong proble…(applause)

I mean, I do not mind losing friends. Wala akong…Nanalo ako pagka-Presidente may — ang mayor ko, I am — ang governor ko, iisa lang dito, Imee lang pati may isa sa Mindanao kasi may ano kami, nakaraan. (applause) Nagkaroon kami ng love affair ang tawag sa Ingles. Wala. Eh wala akong mayor eh. Cebu ang town ng tatay ko sa Danao City, wala akong isa. So wala akong utang na loob. Wala akong utang na loob sa…Wala, kakaunti lang. (applause)

Kaya gusto mo akong magka-utang nasaan na ‘yung maganda kanina? Kilala ko man yang si ano…(laughter) Iyan ang magandang utang na loob kasi…I am taking more than the time allotted to me.

But I assure you, huwag ninyong intindihin iyan, wala na ako. Nanalo ako practically on my own. Dito lang ako nanalo. Iyong I promised you — ano ang ipiniramise (promise) ko? Kaya mamamatay ako dito talaga kung…I promised you: No graft. Talagang no corruption iyan dito. Panahon ko wala talaga. I see to it. Customs, sa BIR, BIR three days ngayon, Dulay, Ilokano iyan. Kasama ko sa dormitoryo, he is good. Department of Foreign Affairs, taga-Davao iyan but he talks like, you know, during Cabinet meeting he would say that — sino ba ‘yang p***** i** Amerikano diyan? Ah si Yasay. Ah taga-Davao iyan. (laughter) You know but he talks, he talks like as if you know everybody understood what you are saying and then — u***. Sabi ko, ‘tumahimik ka diyan Perfecto.’ Magsalita ka ng the intonation and all. But anak kasi ng ano ‘yan, ‘yung ministro sa Davao. Siyempre sanay ‘yung tatay niya. And besides during Martial Law, he was one of ‘yung being hunted by the military then so pumunta siya doon sa Amerika, silang dalawa ni Maceda. So I got this thing about talking like, you know. (laughter) As if everybody is a b*******, you know.

Well, okay ang Cabinet ko. Dulay is from Baguio. Tugade is from Cagayan, iyan ang valedictorian namin. Vit Aguirre was a magna cum laude. Lahat iyan sila puro — lahat iyan sila valedic…Sonny Dominguez, kababata ko ‘yan.

Natapos na lang sila ako nandiyan pa sa high school. T**** i**** ‘yan. Kaya ‘yung kantang, “You raise me up,” when my mother died iyon na lang ang konsulasyon ko talaga. Napapaiyak ako diyan kasi…Alam mo ang tatay ko noong buhay pa, sinabi niya sa akin na, ‘Ikaw do,’ Do is parang…’Ikaw, do, hanggang pantalan ka lang.’ Ibig sabihin hindi ka makatapos tapos iyan…Hanggang diyan ka lang. Ang tatay ko namatay na ganun ang tingin sa akin. High school nga seven years. Sabi sa akin ng nanay ko minsan, ‘Rodrigo, kailan ka matapos?’ 75 nang 75, sabi ko, ‘okay lang ‘yan ma basta makaakyat lang.’ Oo totoo. Alam mo ba hindi ako nakatikim ng…Sa College of Law meron nagka-90, 90 ako kasi takot na wala na ang tatay ko eh. But when my mother died she was 96, talagang tinamaan ako. Iyang kanta na iyan. Kinakanta ko ‘yan sa bar bar diyan, karaoke, hindi ko matatapos, iiyak ako. Kaya ‘yung nanay ko…My mother was…She stood for me. Basta saan, sige lang maski 75.

Pero alam mo, ilan ang valedictorian dito in this crowd? Magsabi kayo nang totoo? Dalawa, tatlo — ilan ang…One, two, three, four, five, six, seven. Wow. Marami tayong…Ang 75 lang? (laughter) O halos lahat. (laughter) See. At saka alam mo totoo lang, dahan-dahan lang sa buhay. Huwag lang pumasok ng shabu, ng kalokohan.

Alalay ninyo ako. As a matter of fact, if it’s between life and death, you cannot solve…Everybody is invited to go to Malacañang. Sabihin mo, pati sundalo sinabi ko, ‘pag may problema ka tapos sabihin mo itong gobyerno puro salita-salita wala na. Maghanap ka lang ng pamasahe, reimburse kita tapos you demand doon sa guwardiya na gusto mo akong makita. Tapos papasukin ka kung hindi ako diyan, somebody will attend to you. But that hindi palasyo iyan huwag kayong maniwala. Kahoy lang ‘yung iba diyan. Hindi naman talagang ‘yan palasyo, palasyo. Siguro palace, it’s just a piece of powder. It is not really intended for me. Inyo iyan pasok kayo. Gusto ninyo manood, bigyan niyo lang ako ng…Tawagan lang ninyo ang ano 8888 sabihin niyo na magano kayo…Huwag lang masyadong marami kasi magalit ‘yung babae diyan na ano masungit. Iyong parang mayordoma diyan. Pag may putik putik na ‘yung…tataratatat…Iyong konti lang mga 20 lang especially students. Gusto ko ‘yang mga bata. Iyong grade school iyan. They should be allowed first. Student, high school ganun. Gusto ko sila muna.

Inyo ‘yang Malakanyang hindi iyan sa akin. Ating lahat iyan. Hindi nga ako natutulog diyan. Totoo hindi ako natutulog sa Malakanyang? Hindi ko lang sabihin kung saan kay baka ma-assassinate ako. (laughter) Diyan lang ako sa tabi-tabi. Kay putres iyang Malakanyang maski araw nagmumulto. (laughter) Ang tatapang ng multo sa Malakanyang. Eh usually ang multo gabi, mga white lady diyan harap-harapan sa araw. (laughter) Aba ibang klase ito.

‘Mayor, saan ka matulog?’ Ah hindi dito. Secret. Pero totoo I do not — kaya kung maghanap kayo kung patayin ninyo ako magsasayang kayo ng panahon. Wala ako diyan sa Malakanyang. May isang hotel lang na maliit, pero sikreto. Small hotel parang Days Inn pero malinis. Ang importante ang kwarto malinis at kung sino ang kasama mo. Hindi ba? (laughter)

Doon sa Malakanyang ang makatabi mo ang multo. (laughter) Okay na lang sana kung lady na white lady. Kung lalaki ang pu**** mayakap mo pa ‘yung…(laughter)

Punta kayo ng Malakanyang. Ako po’y…I am…I suluguon sa bayan. I am just a servant of the people.

Maraming salamat po. (applause)