17 March 2017

From Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella on impeachment case filed against PRRD
Rep. Alejano’s impeachment filing is only the latest in an orchestrated effort of a well-funded destabilization campaign against President Rodrigo Duterte. That Alejano filed his case on the last day of the Congressional session, secures him a whole month and a half to malign President Duterte without being challenged by fellow legislators.

This campaign has provoked abrupt reaction and unwarranted threats from the European Union, spooked by the so-called “rights reports” from high-handed NGOs; and a video at the UN that baselessly pillories the Philippine National Police.

The instigators of this cynical campaign include senators and higher officials who attack the very institutions fighting the crime and contraband that tripled during their term. These are apparently desperate acts to protect their threatened vested interests.

From Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella on linking VP Robredo to Duterte impeachment
While the President previously ruled out the Vice President’s involvement in any destabilization attempt, the release of her UN video message lambasting the Administration’s war on drugs before an international audience and the filing of an impeachment complaint at the House of Representatives which happened on the same day, seems too neat to be written off as mere coincidence.

If it is not her personal intent, she may have played into the hands of those who wish to use her as a political animal. Either way it is a pathetic state of affairs for her.

From Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella on the European Union resolution
We strongly encourage the European Union to be more circumspect in basing their pronouncements and decisions on fact based evidence. So-called critics, with deep personal interests, have brilliantly manipulated biased information locally and internationally by using willing public officials who are agreeable to lend credence to baseless claims.

We reiterate that the Duterte Administration does not engage in so-called extra-judicial killings. It continues to follow due process and holds itself accountable for its actions.

Furthermore, Senator Leila de Lima was arrested on charges that is criminal in nature – not political. Her arrest strictly followed legal procedures, and given the chance to explain and rebut allegations against her.

The Muntinlupa Regional Trial Court – which is both independent and competent – then found probable cause which led to the issuance of a warrant for the incumbent senator’s arrest.

In direct contradiction to the Vice President’s claims on the UN video, the majority of common people actually feel safer on the streets and more hopeful economically after PRRD came into power. It is unfortunate that certain powerful interests have gained the capacity to distort Philippine reality in order to gain back and continue with their extractive politics, being threatened by the creative disruption of PRRD’s political actions.

The drug menace that the Filipino people are fighting is already on the level of narcopolitics, meaning illegal drugs trade has seeped into the system from the smallest political unit to the halls of Congress years before the Duterte administration.

On the possible loss of zero tariffs, we urge the European Parliament to reconsider its decision as we remind everyone, including international bodies, to allow us to deal with our domestic challenges without unwarranted foreign interference. While some may feel a “sovereign obligation” to step into the affairs of another state, it is vital to recognize that the Philippines is a sovereign state, and that the people welcome the newfound peace and order they now enjoy. Our democracy works.