By Genalyn Kabiling
President Duterte is relieved that riots have not erupted in the country similar to the unrest over racial injustice in the United States while the threat of the new coronavirus continues.
The President said it was good the country is not facing the same problem as America amid the pandemic, recognizing that Filipinos are considered law abiding citizens. Duterte noted that there seemed to be “no end in sight” in the riots raging across the United States.
“Wala naman tayong racist ano dito na gaya ng Amerika. (We don’t have racists here like in America). There’s a riot going on. It’s pronounced as riot or riot. There’s a riot going on all over and it seems to me that is no end in sight,” he said in his public address Friday.
“Mabuti na lang hindi tayo ganun at natimingan naman (it is good that we are not like that and it is timely) that the Filipinos are really law-abiding,” he added.
If riots erupt in the country, Duterte admitted the government may have difficulty in implementing the lockdown and distribution of aid to sectors affected by the coronavirus crisis.
“Imagine if America ‘to, how can you enforce the lockdown and the sequestration — ah itong quarantine? Buti’t na lang ganun ‘yon (Imagine if this is America, how can you enforce the lockdown and the sequestration, the quarantine. It’s good that it’s not here) so we have to respond to the problem besetting the distribution of assistance to them,” he said.
Protests against racial injustice and police brutality have been launched across the United States following the death of African-American George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody. Some protests turned violent due to the confrontation between protesters and the police.
Floyd died last May 25 after a police officer kneeled on his neck for several minutes during an arrest. The police officer is facing murder charges while fellow officers were charged with aiding and abetting.
US President Donald Trump has reportedly threatened to apply military force to return peace and order if the reported widespread violence is not stopped.