Rodrigo Duterte

Duterte defends suspended Davao del Norte governor, slams Marcos again

Ferdinand Zuasola

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Duterte defends suspended Davao del Norte governor, slams Marcos again

DEFIANT. In this file photo, Davao del Norte Governor Edwin Jubahib addresses his supporters at the provincial capitol in Tagum City on April 11, 2024.

Newsline Philippines

Former president Rodrigo Duterte warns that his successor, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., is moving towards becoming a 'more authoritarian leader'

DAVAO ORIENTAL, Philippines – Former president Rodrigo Duterte has come to the defense of Davao del Norte Governor Edwin Jubahib, who was ordered suspended from office by Malacañang for two months for alleged abuse of authority and oppression.

“Mr. President, hindi mo na sinusunod ang demokrasya. You are veering toward a more authoritarian leader (sic). Tinanggal mo ang governor ng Davao del Norte na walang rason!” Duterte addressed President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. during a late-night press conference in Davao City on Thursday, April 11.

(Mr. President, you’re not following democracy anymore. You’re veering towards becoming a more authoritarian leader. You removed the governor of Davao del Norte without any reason!)

Jubahib defied the preventive suspension order issued by Malacañang, and his supporters have surrounded the provincial capitol in Tagum City, protesting the order since Thursday morning, April 11.

The order, signed by Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin, placed Jubahib under preventive suspension for 60 days effective on Thursday, April 11, after it found “strong evidence of guilt” in a complaint filed by Provincial Board Member Orly Amit.

“What is very unbelievable for me is wala silang ibinigay na notice kay Governor Jubahib. Wala lahat. Basta sinabi lang sa kanya na umalis ka! Mr. President, Governor Jubahib is elected by the people. You respect the will of the people of Davao del Norte! You are violating his right to due process of law. You are veering dangerously to being an authoritarian leader. Hindi ko nagustuhan yung style mo, Mr. President,” said Duterte.

(What is very difficult for me to believe is that they didn’t give any notice to Governor Jubahib. None at all. They just told him to leave! Mr. President, Governor Jubahib was elected by the people. You should respect the people’s choice in Davao del Norte! You’re ignoring his right to a fair legal process. You’re getting dangerously close to becoming an authoritarian leader. I don’t like your style, Mr. President.)

Jubahib, who called the reason for the suspension order petty, said Amit complained about his act of ordering a capitol-owned vehicle to be taken from the provincial board member and assigning it to the Davao del Norte Provincial Engineering Office. The governor said the vehicle was assigned back to Amit after a month.

For that, according to Jubahib, Amit filed a complaint against him for grave abuse of authority and oppression before the Office of the President.

On Thursday, Jubahib said he suspected that Malacañang’s actions against him were “politically motivated,” and likely the handiwork of Antonio Lagdameo Jr., the special assistant to the President.

Lagdameo is a close relative of an influential family in Davao del Norte, the Del Rosarios, whose decades of political grip in the province Jubahib loosened when he won the gubernatorial post in 2019. He defeated a member of the Del Rosario family in 2019, and defeated another candidate endorsed by the family in 2022. –


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  1. ET

    Look who’s talking. The former authoritarian President accuses his successor of being one. A taste of his own medicine? But note that, as of this incident, Marcos’s brand of authoritarianism is still far below that of Duterte’s in terms of degrees of control and repression.

    1. RB

      I was just going to make the exact same comment! 🙂

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