Duterte threatens to walk out debate if cut off by moderator
Mike Frialde (philstar.com) - February 18, 2016 - 8:37pm

MANILA, Philippines - Davao City mayor and presidential aspirant Rodrigo Duterte has threatened to walk out of the Pilipinas Debates 2016 to be held at the Capitol University in Cagayan de Oro City on Sunday if he would be cut-off by the debate’s moderator.

Duterte says he needs at least 15 minutes to process his thoughts and answer whatever is being asked of him in the debate.

“Sabihan ko yung moderator, kung ikaw ang gustong magdaldal, e 'di ikaw na lang. E bakit mo ako iipitin? I’m a slow talker. I’m a deliberate. Yung matagal maglabas. What I conceive in my head, the gray matter between my ears, takes a long time to express it orally,” he told reporters at the UP Diliman campus on Thursday afternoon.

Duterte visited UP Diliman to listen to the concerns of vendors and UP “Ikot” jeepney drivers.

According to Duterte, he would need at least 15 minutes more to speak during the debate.

The presidential debate is part of a series organized by the Commission on Elections (Comelec). Depending on the available time, there will be three or four rounds of questions. In each round, candidates will be paired off.

For each pair, the first candidate will have 90 seconds to answer the question, the paired candidate 60 seconds to rebut, and the first candidate again 30 seconds to counter the rebuttal.

He said he would tell the moderator to shut up and then demand his additional 15 minutes to speak. Duterte also threatens to walkout of the debate and just “go home” if he will not get his additional time to speak.

“Sasabihin ko. Tumahimik ka. Baka (walkout) Sabihin ko dagdagan mo ng kinse minutos. Why do you have to control? You put me under stress. I cannot talk and think. I might as well go home,” he said.

In the debate, Duterte says he would expound on his program of government if elected as the country’s next president.

“I will say my piece. We need to have something like law and order and we need to stop criminality, drugs and then corruption. We must fix government and then nation-building. We need to talk to the revolutionary fronts, the NPA (communist New People’s Army) and the Muslim insurgents. Then I have to embark on economic measures,” he said.

As for questions on topics that he admitted he has no knowledge of, such as technical matters as Internet access speed, Duterte says he would simply not answer them and ask the moderator to answer the question himself.

“Sabihin ko, wala akong alam sa ganun. ‘Wag niyo akong tanungin. Why should I be nervous? I have no obligation to lie in the first place. So ‘pag 'di ko alam, sasabihin ko, ano yang itinatanong mo? Sagutin mo 'yang sariling tanong mo,” he said. 

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