Duterte to play Pontius Pilate on previous govt contracts

Published May 11, 2019, 11:05 AM

by AJ Siytangco

By Argyll Cyrus Geducos 

President Duterte won’t lift a finger should contracts signed by previous administrations “blow up,” turning the Philippines into a chaotic country.

Duterte made the statement in a speech in Davao City late Friday.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte

Duterte said there are contracts of previous governments that the military and the police would not like.

“Wala nako to buhii niadto pagbasa nako kay nagtu-o ko nga kaning military ug pulis og mabasa nila na, mupalag (I did not divulge the details before when I read the contracts because I felt that the military and the police  might not like it),” he said.

“Mangita gyu’g bikil kay ang mga kontrata nga gisudlan sa niaging mga presidente, di gyud nimo madawat (It will really create trouble because they won’t accept the contracts that were signed by previous presidents),” he added.

The President also said he was really upset when water was not categorized as a natural resource.

“Tanan na, natural resource. Kahoy, ana. Naa siya ato ngari. Katong water para sa tubig, dili natural resource. Para sa ila, commodity lang nga muagas sa gripo unya bayran nato (Everything was categorized as natural resource, like wood and others. But water for them is just a commodity that flows out of the faucet and we pay for it.  They did not think of water as a natural resource),” Duterte noted.

Duterte then said that if the said government contracts blow up, he will not do anything and  would insist they were not made under his term.

“So wala gyuy — tan-aw nako gubot ning Pilipinas, pasagdan ko lang man pud. Tama na pud arong… Ako, tinuod ko og mubuto ning mga kontrata karon, di na ko mag (If I think that Philippines is too chaotic, I will just leave it as it is. It’s just right so that… If these contracts blow up, I will no longer)…” he said.

“Mura na ko’g Poncio Pilato, manghugas ko kay di man pud sa akong panahon (I will be like Pontius Pilate. I will say that I have nothing to do with it, that it did not happen during my term),” he added.

Meanwhile, Duterte said that he won’t implement the government contracts either since he can’t stand the provisions that place the government and the people at a disadvantage.

“Di pud nako na iimplementar sa akong panahon kay di man gyud masikmura na ilang ginabutang diha nang ilang kontrata (I won’t implement it in my term because I can’t stand the provisions that they included in those contracts),” he said.

Onerous contracts

According to Duterte, he had wanted to divulge information about the said government contracts a long time ago but was afraid that the police and the military would stage a coup once they find out.

“It’s not that they’re opposing me, but probably because they can’t stand it anymore also. I can’t stand it as well,” he said.

Last month, PresidentDuterte ordered Solicitor General Jose Calida and Justice Secretary Menardo Guevara to review onerous government contracts with private firms and foreign entities and remove provisions that could harm Filipinos.

Duterte’s order to review the contracts came after the water rationing in several parts of Metro Manila. In the Cabinet meeting early this week, Duterte instructed Calida and Guevara to study the arbitration case that Maynilad won over the government.

The said ruling compelled the government to pay Maynilad P3.42 billion for not implementing a water tariff hike from March 2015 to August 2016. It also said Maynilad can still sue the government for losses incurred due to the unenforced tariff hike from January 2013 to March 2015.