Media Interview with President Rodrigo Roa Duterte
Malacañan Palace Grounds
27 February 2017
[interview starts]

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: We are all spectators to what transpired the days past.

Q: Opo.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: We leave it to the judgment of the nation to see who is lying and who is not. Nandiyan naman tayong lahat. Who are all part of the audience of what was evolving. So I’ll leave it to the courts.

Q: Sir, she filed a motion before the Supreme Court asking the High Court to junk the arrest warrant, sir, and the case saying na wala daw pong evidence?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I would not want to comment on that because I think a case has been filed, a warrant has been issued and it is sub judice kung… I would not want to violate the…Standard operating procedures of court, you are not supposed to be giving your opinion while the case is pending.

The court has taken jurisdiction. It is already the property of the court by virtue of the warrant that’s issued.

Q: But after, sir, ‘nung nangyari kay Senator De Lima, may dahilan po ba para matakot ‘yung mga kritiko ng administrasyon?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Unless you are involved in drugs, you should be. You’re a critic of what? Of the drug campaign and you are — yourself into drugs? Eh you should be afraid.

Q: Sir, may kasunod ba?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I do not know. It’s… Truth to tell, honestly, I have not called Aguirre once. Iyan ang totohanan diyan. I do not interfere with their jobs.

Q: Sir, natatakot daw si Secretary — Senator De Lima sa safety niya sa — ?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I assure that she is safe. I think people are interested not to see her death but to see her in prison for what she did.

Q: Meaning, sir, she deserves it? She deserves it?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, that is for the courts to decide.

Q: Sir, do you assure her safety at Camp Crame?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Yes. I am sure that she is 100 percent safe there.

Q: Sir, would you care to comment on the, you know, ‘yung lumabas ‘yung nag-recant ng statement si Lascañas, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Oh, well… There might be another one coming after recant of the recant. I’m sure.

Q: Sir, you’re not worried, sir, about the implication na, you know, he’ll spill the beans?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I did not deny that hundreds of criminals died in Davao City. Sa 23 years ko? Eh talagang naubos.

But, you know, I’m a — an employee of the government, I built a city and I will build a nation.

Hindi ko trabaho ‘yang…Pero sa pulis, upon my orders, just the same. Do not destroy my country, do not deprive us of our young people. You will die.

They’re the same orders that I’m giving here. It so happened that, itong mga ibang pulis pocket-up, gaya ‘nong mga pera, because you know you have to give the police money, because if they go out and hunt for trafficking of drugs, there must be a selling and a buying, otherwise, there is no trafficking.

Kaya ‘yung sinasabi na binibigyan sila ng pera, I do not deny that. And… 

Hindi ganito ‘yan. Lahat… Magtanong ka ng lahat na army, lahat ng pulis na dumaan ng Davao, I give money every command conference, tapos operating.

Ngayon, kung meron silang buy-bust, maghingi ng pera ‘yan, pambili. Kasi kung wala kang pera, walang transaction sa shabu. Iyong iba, binulsa. Tapos sinabi, binibigyan. Bakit kami magbigay ng pera sa kanila? May sweldo sila.

But ‘yung iba binulsa ‘yung drug money na pambili, binulsa pa ‘yung pera ng — ‘yung pusher. Kinuha pa ‘yung shabu pati ‘yung pera.

Q: Sir, ‘yung sa command conference later, sir, mapapag-usapan po ba ‘yung alleged na beheading, sir, ‘nong German, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: That’s a very complicated issue. It cannot be solved by just a command conference here.

Q: Pero confirmed na ba, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: It’s a sustained military action that is needed there. I have not… I have not… We have not seen any visual thing there.

Q: Sir, waiting pa daw ‘yung PNP, sir, sa inyo, sa instructions, kasi nag-lie low sila sa war against drugs?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Hindi ganito… Dela Rosa’s job is to look for young men in the PNP who are imbued with patriotic fervor to serve their country.

Iyon ang kunin niya tapos i-marshal niya against the… Because there is again a rise of the drug activities by 20 percent. So hindi talaga ma…

Sinabi ko sa inyo, it’s a virulent thing. Hindi matapos-tapos ‘yan.

Q: Sir, sabi ni Senator Cayeteno dapat daw i-resume na ‘yung Tokhang?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, I said, give me the men that I can trust to handle the campaign. Eh kung ganoon rin, ibigay mo ‘yung mga pera, gaya ‘nung nandoon na sa labas tapos hindi ibigay — hindi ibili ‘yung pera. Tapos sabihin pa tuloy na binigyan sila ng pera parapumatay. Bakit ko kailangan bigyan sila ng pera para pumatay? Trabaho man nila ‘yan.

Q: Sir, for ano lang ha, for fairness lang. Sir, kilala niyo naman si Lascañas?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, as a policeman, yes. I saw him once, twice a year.

Q: Pero hindi ninyo po ‘yon parang ‘yung sinasabi niya kasi nag-buo kayo ng task force tapos eventually that was used as a DDS?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Walang task force. Tapos kita mo naman dito, I give the orders to the chief, kay Bato. Wala akong bata-bata na ganoon. Even sa military. I just go to the kay ano…

Do not make it a habit of — ‘di ba sinabi ko? Every now and then do not create a cult or rido — I do not need it. I said, I do not need it, I do not like it.

Wala akong favoritism. Kung anong ibinibigay ko sa ibang unit, ‘yon ang ibinibigay ko sa kanila.

Q: Sir, sa pro-Duterte rally. Nagsigawan ‘yung mga tao isunod na daw si Senator Trillanes kay De Lima. Ano po ‘yung… Meron ba tayong susunod na hakbang, sir?


Q: Isunod na raw si Senator Trillanes kay Senator De Lima?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: He is too insignificant to bother yourself. Ba’t papatol ka?

Q: Mr. President, tuloy pa ba ‘yung Oplan Tokhang?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I don’t know. I would leave it to the PNP to decide.

Anong kailangan nila? What they have to do to succeed? I do not meddle in the mechanisms there. Wala ako. Basta ang akin is ito tapusin mo, ito gawain mo. I do not inquire into how, where, what.

Q: Sir, ‘yun lang pong ibang mga alter ego ninyo, halimbawa sila Martin, sila Secretary Lopez, may iba’t ibang mga fino-float tapos binabawi. For example si Senator… si Secretary Aguirre, ang sabi parang dinisown (disown) niya ‘yung sinabi niya kay Trillanes, tapos si Gina, sabi may bribery na 50 million, tapos sabi niya hindi naman totoo iyon. Sir, pag ka ganoon, sir, nangyayari, paano ba ‘yun? Iba-iba ‘yung — ?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, we have our own sources. This is a democracy. And even sabi ko, just to show to you how…Hindi naman — there’s no discord there but…

Anything that is of public interest, they can always go public. Eh mas mabuti na ‘yung mali basta — kaysa taguin mo na, suppress a lie. You might as well just tell the truth, even if the truth is half or it is not the truth at all.

Q: Sir, ‘yung left may ano tayo — may gumagana pa ba ‘yon, sir, peace talks?

Q: Anong progress, sir, sa PNP cleansing, how long will it take to cleanse the police?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I will know…I will ask the PNP itself. There’s a command conference, so everybody is there. And if anybody wants to talk because we are short of this particular action or an excessive one and the size of their function, they can tell me.

Q: Sir, ano pong plano nila kay Janet Napoles? Ire-resume ninyo ba ito or maghahanap ba kayo ng iba pang pork barrel suspects na kakuntsaba niya?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I will try to assess kasi parang selective ‘yung binira eh. Hindi naman lahat nasa… You know, it’s sauce for the gander, sauce for the goose.

The criminal action must proceed against all who are responsible, that’s the principle there. A criminal action shall proceed against all persons responsible thereof. That’s the principle behind there.

Q: Sir, parang may hindi gusto ‘yung ibang tao na ginawa sa ginawa ni OSG na parang, he is in effect parang lawyering for Napoles, in fact parang — ?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I think he is right. I agree with the…Because your job even if you are the prosecutor, if you are — I have done that several times when I was a prosecutor.

I myself would move for the dismissal of the case especially one ‘yung fabricated, planted evidence ‘yung ganoon. Ako talaga nagsasabi, ‘because your honor, the evidence was…’

Q: Sir, but it has nothing to do with connections po ng mga lawyers niya sa inyo, sir? Sila Atty. David?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Hindi, ako pagka ganun…Hindi ba totoo naman, how could there be…? The circumstances would show it, he was not restrained at all.

If you follow the story of the Solicitor General, he is right. He could — in and out, ilang beses nagbisita ‘yung media sa kanya, he never really — hindi naman siya umiyak.

Para sa akin talaga, kung ako idi-dismiss ko rin talaga. I will move for the dismissal of the case…

Q: Sir, pwede pa ba siyang maging state witness?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: …because it is not our job to persecute, it is your job to prosecute rightly. Simple ano lang ‘yan, it’s simple justice.

Q: Sir, dismissal ‘nung illegal detention ha not the PDAF cases?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Ah hindi PDAF, PDAF cases. Iyong PDAF cases ang, it’s…

Q:  Sir, pwede pa ba siyang maging state witness, si Janet Napoles, pwede pa siyang — ?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I don’t know. Because you must appear to be the least responsible. If you are the most responsible there, how can you…

Q: Sir, what do you think of Napoles’ role in the PDAF?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Siya lahat. Siya lahat, I would say. Judging from…Baka ano… May kaso ba? Kasi baka masabit tayo dito. Huwag ninyo akong tanungin masasabit lang ako diyan. Nakakahiya.

Q: Sir, message kay De Lima, sir?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Presidente ako tapos abugado pa.

Q: Sir, may message kayo kay Senator de Lima?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: De Lima? Well, she can always pray that the truth will come out eventually if there is another truth. Ako naman hindi naman mahilig mag-ano ng kapwa tao.

Iyon nga sa akin ‘yung pinapatay ko ‘yung kriminal eh talagang dapat mong patayin ‘yan eh. How can we move in this country if — kung lahat bangag na sa droga?

You know, maski ganito lang ako I love my country and I would really destroy you.

Q: Sir, si Bongbong magD-DILG?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: He is not interested.

Q: Sir, anong level of integrity ang gusto niyo sa PNP bago niyo sila ibalik sa Tokhang operations?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Not exactly. Well, we are all human beings, we all have feet of clay.

‘Di ba ika nga? So iyong ano lang the standard is you must be honest, efficient, you must not be corrupt, so that everything will be in order.

Alam mo kasi kung minsan when you start to crave for things you cannot afford. Pulis ka tapos gusto mo kaagad ng kotse. Ito mura na ito mabili na nila ito.

Q: Sir, mukha namang matibay. [laughter]

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Matibay ito. Alam mo, I remember when I was young ‘yung Volkswagen noon may ganitong panahon ni Marcos, progressive, ‘yung parang beetle na bukas…

Q: Kuba.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Hindi ‘yung parang bukas parang Minica. Ang tibay ‘non ibinigay na noon sa pulis. Hindi na lang pinatuloy eh sayang.

Halos dito na ginawa iyon except for the engines. Iyon mura talaga ‘yon at saka matibay. Gamit ng pulis ‘yon. I was already around when those things were distributed.

Q: Sir, si Gina do you still like her?


Q: Si Gina Lopez, sir, kahit hindi mag-hurdle…

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Yes, of course. Hindi ko kukunin iyan kung hindi ko gusto.

Q: Kahit hindi niya ma-hurdle ‘yung CA?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Well, that’s another thing because you know this is a democracy.

I do not control the careers of people through and through. There are processes to be observed.

Q: To be followed.

Q: Thank you, sir.

Q: Sir, are you planning to [inaudible]…

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Yes. You know, I bought my eldest grandson a second hand.

The problem is the other siblings nag-selos. Sabi ko not at the same time because I cannot afford it. But maybe, baka ito maka-ano tayo.

Q: Ibibigay ba ito sa iyo, sir?


Q: Ibibigay nila sa’yo?

PRESIDENT DUTERTE: I am not allowed to accept this and all that…[laughter]

 Q: Good answer.

 PRESIDENT DUTERTE: How much is this? Baka.

Q: Sir, bumabalik na ‘yung bentahan ng shabu sa kalye, ano po ang gagawin ninyo?

 PRESIDENT DUTERTE: Alam ko. I got out of Malacañan, I know. Totoo ‘yan. Lumabas talaga ako ng Malacañang. Hindi ko lang…

Kung ayaw nilang huminto mag-suicide ako. Takutin ko na lang sila. Mag-bomber na lang ako, suicide bomber.

Well, I’ll discuss it with the police and the military.

 Q: Thank you, sir.

SOURCE: PCO PND – Transcriber