MANILA, Philippines – As he opened Mindanao's largest drug rehabilitation center, President Rodrigo Duterte said he has asked God to make sure victims of extrajudicial killings (EJKs) go to heaven.
"You enjoy your human rights there in heaven kasi (because) God promised you that victims of EJKs go to heaven. 'Yan ang sabi ko sa Diyos (that's what I told God)," he said on Friday, August 3.
He was giving a speech after unveiling the marker for the P500-million Northern Mindanao Wellness and Reintegration Center donated by a group of Chinese businessmen. The center is touted as proof that his administration is serious about rehabilitating drug addicts.
Duterte then relayed his supposed conversation with God, where his request was granted.
"Sabi naman ng Diyos, 'Puwede, puwede.' Gagawin ko ba naman 'yan kung walang guarantee? Kasi kaawa naman. Nagdrodroga ka, impiyerno ka. God, pagbigyan mo na lang 'yan," said the Philippine President.
(God said, 'Okay, okay.' Will I do that if there is no guarantee? Because they are pitiful. You take drugs, you go to hell. God, just give them a break.)
Duterte then claimed he made another personal special request to God. "Reserve the hottest place in hell for me and may I burn till eternity," he said.
The President, leader of a predominantly Catholic nation, then again called the God of his critics "stupid."
"Why would God create an oven for his creation kaya sabi ko (that's why I said) I have a God but it is not your stupid God," said Duterte. (READ: Duterte: 'Your God is stupid, mine has common sense)
The Duterte administration has consistently said it believes in rehabilitating drug addicts and treating drug addiction as a health issue. But alongside these statements are Duterte's own threats to kill drug addicts and drug peddlers and vows to promote policemen who "massacre" criminals. – Rappler.com
Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.