House of Representatives

Makabayan bloc’s Castro to file criminal complaint vs ex-president Duterte

Kaycee Valmonte

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Makabayan bloc’s Castro to file criminal complaint vs ex-president Duterte

Representative France Castro delivers her interpellation during the hearing on the proposed 2024 budget of the Office of the Ombudsman, at the House of Representatives on September 11, 2023.

Rappler

Following former president Rodrigo Duterte's threats on television, ACT Teachers Representative France Castro says she has since feared for her life

House Deputy Minority Leader France Castro said on Friday, October 20, that she will file a criminal complaint against former president Rodrigo Duterte after he threatened to kill the lawmaker on television.

The ACT Teachers representative said she will file the complaint along with volunteer lawyers from different organizations, members of the Makabayan bloc, and other individuals who are against the use of confidential funds. 

“We are resolved to file a case on Wednesday,” Castro said in Filipino during an interview with Radyo5 on Friday.

“[It is a] grave threat because we think that this should not be done to anyone, even a normal person should not attempt to threaten someone’s life. This also shows the culture of impunity that has to stop,” she added.

Duterte made the tirades against Castro in an SMNI interview after the House of Representatives stripped five government agencies of their proposed confidential funds in the 2024 budget. Rodrigo also accused the lower chamber of being the “most rotten institution” in the country and called for an audit of its spending.

Among the affected agencies are the Office of the Vice President (OVP) and the Department of Education (DepEd), both led by Vice President Sara Duterte. He said that Castro should be the “first target” of his daughter’s proposed total confidential funds, referring to the latter’s anti-communist drive.

Makabayan bloc’s Castro to file criminal complaint vs ex-president Duterte

“It’s obvious that he is trying to meddle with the decision of the House of Representatives to realign the confidential funds of the [OVP],” Castro said. 

Meanwhile, the Vice President on Thursday thanked her supporters in a video message for backing her despite criticism drawn by her offices’ controversial confidential fund requests.

She also called out those who interfered with her 2024 budget proposal, saying in Filipino, “There is a time for everything and now is not the time for slandering someone and politicking, especially since the next presidential election is not in the near future.”

House Speaker Martin Romualdez – who was also on the receiving end of the former president’s rants – earlier denied that the removal of the OVP and DepEd confidential funds was politically motivated. 

“We’re just doing our jobs,” Castro said on Friday. “All agencies – we all questioned their need for confidential funds. I hope that the confidential funds will no longer be requested and that budget will instead be given to services and other needs of our countrymen.”

Makabayan bloc’s Castro to file criminal complaint vs ex-president Duterte

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