By Genalyn Kabiling
President Duterte said he would be “very glad to go” if the International Criminal Court (ICC) sentences him to death by hanging for alleged abuses related to his war on illegal drugs.
Even as he insisted the ICC would never acquire jurisdiction over him, the President said he was willing to accept the sentence.
“For the things that I have said, ordered and done, I am willing to put my neck in these matters,” Duterte said during the PDP-Laban campaign rally in Isabela last Wednesday where he dwelt on his campaign against drugs.
“Maybe someday the fools in the ICC, if they decide to hang me, I would be very glad to go and I’ll be the one to tie the noose,” he said.
The President made the remarks a few days after the Philippines pulled out from the Rome Statute, the founding treaty of the ICC.
In February last year, the ICC launched a preliminary examination into the alleged crimes against humanity committed by Duterte while carrying out the bloody crackdown on drugs. A month later, he angrily withdrew the country’s membership from the ICC, accusing the court of violating due process.
In Isabela, the President insisted that not in a million years would the ICC have jurisdiction over him. He said the Rome Statute was not enforceable in the country due to lack of publication in the Official Gazette, a requirement before it becomes law.
“You know in this country we have rules to follow. The Constitution gives us the right, everyone of us, due process of law,” he said.
“Was I given due process? None. Why? You will prosecute me in a law that was not published,” he said.