Duterte: I do not covet the presidency

NOT RUNNING? 'I do not covet the presidency. Malayo talaga yan,' says Duterte during a meeting with Naia taxi drivers and operators on June 3. All photos by Mark Saludes/Rappler

NOT RUNNING? 'I do not covet the presidency. Malayo talaga yan,' says Duterte during a meeting with Naia taxi drivers and operators on June 3.

All photos by Mark Saludes/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines—Davao City Mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte reiterated on Wednesday, June 3, he doesn’t want to run for president in the 2016 elections.

In his speech before the Airport Transport Concessionaires Association Inc (ATCAI) at the Duty Free Fiesta Mall in Parañaque City, Duterte said, “Let me be very frank with you. Huwag sana kayong magalit o ma-disappoint. I do not covet the presidency. Malayo talaga yan.” 

(Let me be very frank with you. Please don’t get mad or disappointed. I do not covet the presidency; so far for it to happen.)

Duterte however said that if the people and God will permit, and he becomes the next president, he will bring total change in systems and in the government.

Duterte again spoke about federalism as his main agenda, stressing that only through federalism can local governments have genuine progress and power.

“Actually, ang mensahe ko lang talaga eh ang federalism po. Nakikita niyo naman ang nangyayari ngayon na talagang naiiwan ang nasa labas ng Metro Manila. Alam ko yung damdamin niyo with the economy,” said Duterte.

(Actually, my only message is federalism. You can see what’s happening now when provinces are really being left behind. I know what you feel with the economy.)

“Nakita ko na ang problema sa BBL. Sabi ni President Aquino, ni [Moro Islamic Liberation Front chair] Murad [Ebrahim]...na kung hindi mapapasa ang BBL eh magbilang na kayo ng body bag. Davao and the rest of Mindanao will be the battle ground. So anong gagawin ko? I am a mayor of a city for 22 years and I saw a lot of sufferings sa buhay ko. Pumutok ang simbahan, pumutok ang airport, ang pantalan, pumutok ang terminal ng bus, anong gagawin ko? Kung hindi kami magkakaintindihan sa Mindanao eh magkakagulo. Kaya sabi ko, bago ito mag- deteriorate at kung hindi matuloy ang BBL eh may baraha ako and that’s federalism,” Duterte said.

(I saw the problem with BBL. President Aquino and [Moro Islamic Liberation Front chair] Murad [Ebrahim]...that if the BBL will not be passed as a law, we should start counting body bags. Davao and the rest of Mindanao will be the battle ground. What will I do? I am a mayor of a city for 22 years and I saw a lot of sufferings in my life. A church was bombed, the airport was bombed, the fish port, bus terminal were bombed, what should I do? If we do not understand each other in Mindanao it will be chaotic. That’s why I said, before it deteriorates and if the BBL won’t pass, I still have a card and that’s federalism.)

FULL SUPPORT. Members of the Airport Transport Concessionaires Association Inc (ATCAI) show their support for Duterte and hope to encourage him to run for president.

FULL SUPPORT. Members of the Airport Transport Concessionaires Association Inc (ATCAI) show their support for Duterte and hope to encourage him to run for president.

Iron fist

“I haven’t denied na sinabi ko sa pulis na lahat ng criminal ay paalisin niyo sa Davao. Pag ayaw niyo umalis eh mamamatay kayo. I haven’t denied that. Ngayon kung sino ang namatay doon eh yung pulis ang hanapin niyo,” said Duterte.

(I haven’t denied when I told the police to drive away all criminals from Davao. If they refuse to leave, they will die. I haven’t denied that. Now, if anyone died you should ask the police.)

While addressing the crowd, Duterte shared a story about how he gave advice to police officers about how to handle a crime situation in Davao.

“Ewan ko kung nakita niyo sa TV, yung nang-kidnap tapos dinala nila sa Davao. Sabi ng pulis, buksan ang bintana. Sabi ko huwag mong gawin yan, pag binuksan mo ang bintana, puputukan ng M16 ang pulis mo. Paulanan mo na lang ng bala para sumuko yan.”

(I don’t know if you saw it in the television; the kidnapper who brought the victim to Davao. The police said, open the window. I told them not to do that because if they do, the police will shot with an M16. Instead, I told them to shower the suspect with bullets so he would surrender.)

PRAYER. ATCAI members pray over the Davao City mayor during his meeting with drivers and operators at the Duty Free Fiesta Mall in Parau00f1aque City.

PRAYER. ATCAI members pray over the Davao City mayor during his meeting with drivers and operators at the Duty Free Fiesta Mall in Parau00f1aque City.

“Tumawag agad ang Crame, sabi nila eh may rules of engagement kami. Sabi ko, 'Mawalang galang na lang po General, hindi po ako pulis, mayor po ako,” added Duterte.

(Camp Crame called immediately. They said that they have rules of engagement. I told them, "I'm sorry General, I am not a policeman, I am a mayor.")

“Kaya siguro sa akin nagagalit si [Justice Secretary] Leila de Lima at si [Commission on Human Rights Chair] Etta Rosales dahil mas gusto ko na gawin ang trabaho ko na pangalagaan ang seguridad at kaayusan ng bayan ko,” Duterte said.

(Maybe that’s the reason why [Justice Secretary] Leila de Lima and [Commission on Human Rights Chair] Etta Rosales are mad at me, because I want to do my job as protector of my city.)

“Talagang sumama ang peace and order at korapsyon sa Pilipinas, kaya yung mga taong pumupunta sa Davao eh hinahanap yung kaayusan at gustong dalhin sa ibang lugar. Kaya maraming tumutulak na tumakbo akong presidente.”

(Peace and order and corruption have worsened in the Philippines. People who went to Davao want it in their places. That’s why people are encouraging me to run as president.)

“But I must warn you. I am strict and if you want me to be president the system and everything in the government will change. You will have a second Marcos,” warned Duterte.

SELFIE. Members of ATCAI hope that Duterte runs in 2016.

SELFIE. Members of ATCAI hope that Duterte runs in 2016.

Rappler.com