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5-minute inaugural speech, 2-car backup for Rody

Incoming president Rodrigo Duterte said he doesn’t want his inaugural speech to last more than five minutes. AP Photo/Aaron Favila, File

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Known for his long drawn out press briefings, incoming president Rodrigo Duterte said he doesn’t want his inaugural speech to last more than five minutes.

He will skip his formal proclamation by Congress in Manila. And once he assumes the presidency, he will do away with the multi-vehicle security convoy for presidents and settle for two backup vehicles.

“I’ll go nationwide on TV and I’ll just spell out my governance in five minutes,” Duterte told reporters Monday night.

He said he is used to just having two vehicles with him when traveling around to perform his duties.

“I do not want to be followed around,” Duterte said in a press briefing. “I’ve been used to only two cars. The media of Davao know that. I’d like to maintain it that way.”

When asked how he would react if the Presidential Security Group (PSG) insists on following security protocol, Duterte answered: “Di sila na lang mag-presidente (Then let them be the president instead).”


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Earlier, Duterte said he does not want to use the presidential limousine and would opt for his pickup truck as his official vehicle.

He also stressed his inauguration would be held at Malacañang – and not in Rizal Park – and that it would be very simple.

 “I will take my oath of office not in Luneta because I will just create a monstrous traffic congestion. I hate putting pressure on people or cause inconvenience to everybody. I will just do it in Malacañang,” the incoming president said.

“I was told that the venue can accommodate 500 people. I intend to keep it as low as 150,” he added.

Based on protocol, a presidential inauguration is attended by members of the diplomatic corps, military officials and Cabinet members.

Duterte said even the food to be served to guests would be simple.

“There will be finger food at noontime but no eating after that,” he said.

Duterte also does not see the need to attend his proclamation at the House of Representatives.

He said he would fly to Manila on June 30, the day of his inauguration.

“If the flight is delayed, then there is no inauguration,” Duterte said in jest. 

While Duterte may appear unmindful of threats to himself, incoming Presidential Security Group (PSG) chief Col. Rolando Bautista said he believes the president-in-waiting would not be a security nightmare.

“Our presumptive president is very reasonable. When you say something to him, he will take that into consideration,” Bautista said in a chance interview.

Bautista, who led the Joint Task Group Basilan, said they would stick to existing procedures and protocols on securing the president. He said securing Duterte is both “a challenge and an opportunity.”

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