If elected, Duterte will set up revolutionary government

Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte. Malacañang Photo Bureau/Ryan Lim

MANILA, Philippines - Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte will do what the late President Corazon Aquino did in 1986 – establish a revolutionary government – if he decides to run for president and wins.

“I will give myself six months to one year to do the reforms I want to do. If the system becomes obstructionist and I become inutile, I will declare a revolutionary government,” he said in a television interview.

He indicated that he would padlock Congress and the judiciary.

“You have to close everything. It is anti-democratic, but how do you change society? Nothing seems to work in this country (under the present system),” he said.

He said he would establish a federal-parliamentary type of government that would devolve powers to the regions.

“Our neighbors like Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, down to New Zealand and Australia have a federal-parliamentary system and are progressing economically. Our country continues to keep the presidential form of government,” he said.

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He added that Spanish and later American colonizers introduced the presidential system for “control of the government.”

Duterte questioned the intervention of the judiciary in government efforts to improve basic services like public transportation.

He said he pitied Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya when a Makati City regional trial court judge stopped him from procuring new train coaches to replace and augment the dilapidated and aging Metro Rail Transit 3 trains.

He said he could not understand why a judge would meddle with the government in its desire to field additional coaches in the EDSA rail line.

The Makati judge issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) on the basis of a complaint filed by MRT private investors led by Robert John Sobrepeña of the collapsed College Assurance Plan and Camp John Hay Development Corp.

The judge subsequently lifted his TRO and allowed Abaya to procure new MRT coaches.

Asked what he would do to solve drug trafficking and other illegal activities by convicts at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP), Duterte said he would detain them on a ship in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

“I will just give them rice and they will have to fish for their food. I don’t know if they will still pursue their illegal activities,” he said.

As of now, he said convicted drug traffickers continue to traffic in prohibited drugs inside and outside the NBP, while hired killers are able to go out, kill people for money and then return to their detention cells.

“This is not against (Justice) Secretary Leila de Lima, but I don’t know how these convicts are able to do it,” he added.

He advocated dialogue with China on the disputed islets in the West Philippine Sea.

“We cannot go to war with China over these territories, neither would the United States,” he said.

He said if the US wanted to stop Chinese reclamations in several of the contested islets, it would have done so a long time ago.

Duterte is against the anti-dynasty bill pending in Congress, saying it would violate the voters’ freedom of choice.

He said he has not decided yet to seek the presidency, citing opposition from his family and lack of finances as the hurdles he would have to overcome.

Duterte revealed that “captains of industry” had volunteered to fund his campaign, but that he rejected the offer.

Duterte said that several big time financiers have approached him for them to be given the chance to fund his campaign if he runs for president.

“But I turned them down,” the mayor said without mentioning who these political financiers were.

He said that he sees himself as an alternative presidential candidate.

“Let me be the fourth choice,” Duterte said.

Duterte said he considers the possible frontrunners in next presidential elections as Vice President Jejomar Binay, Sen. Grace Poe and Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II. – With Perseus Echeminada, Edith Regalado, Jose Rodel Clapano, Mayen Jaymalin

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