Duterte rules out any ambition to stay beyond his term

Published February 25, 2018, 2:00 PM

by iManila Developer

By Genalyn Kabiling

President Duterte has ruled out any ambition to stay beyond his term, urging anew the military to “kill” him if he becomes a dictator.

The President affirmed that the military and police must prevent anyone from violating the Constitution that states a president has a six-year term and is not eligible for any re-election.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his speech during the Petron-Petron Dealers Association (PETDA) Mindanao Mini Convention at the SMX Convention Center in Davao City on February 24, 2018. TOTO LOZANO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

“I suppose that the Armed Forces and the police will see to it that the Constitution is followed. Kaya sabi ko sa kanila, ‘Maniwala kayo diyan mag-diktador ako? Patayin ninyo ako (So I told them, ‘Do you believe that I will become a dictator? Just kill me’),” Duterte said during a visit to a military camp in Dingle, Iloilo on Thursday.

“If I overstay in the office even one day, you oust me and you kill me. Wala akong ambisyon. Gusto ko ngang umalis na (I don’t have any ambition. I actually want to leave),” said Duterte, who has a term until 2022.

Duterte admitted that he has grown tired from his heavy workload, and even believes that he should be paid more.

He wished to earn an “ideal” salary of P1.5 million instead of the current P200,000 wage that supposedly had no meal or representation allowance. “It’s very tiring, you keep on flying and saluting,” he said in Filipino.

The President earlier defended his strong and strict leadership style, saying the country would make no progress if he did not act like a dictator.

In previous speeches, Duterte declared he would not be a tyrant, just a strong and unwavering leader in fighting illegal drugs, crime and corruption.

Political opponents, human rights groups, and other critics however have questioned the President’s policies, such as the imposition of martial law in Mindanao and the bloody war on illegal drugs, were allegedly bordering on authoritarian rule.