The Working President

The Working President
Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte "destined to become president"

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Saturday, October 4, 2014

The naked truth about Duterte


By Jun Ledesma | Oct. 3, 2014


 DAVAO CITY, Davao
— During coffee break in the public relations seminar I attended in Tagaytay City last week, I was asked by Malou Tiquia, the Chief Executive of Publicus Asia, what this troubling issue about Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte planning to shoot those who advocate his running for the Presidential race in 2016.

I quickly remembered that Ms. Tiquia openly considered Duterte as one possible presidential timber in an interview with Boy Abunda’s “The Bottom Line”. It was in the same talk show that political analyst and UP Prof. Clarita Carlos passionately endorsed Duterte for the Presidency stressing that he is in fact very qualified and more importantly has a “fire in his belly”. What she meant is that Digong is one kind of a leader who is ready to fight with all his might and determination for what he believes is right.

Seeing Ms. Tiquia in person this time gave me the opportunity to ask her whether she has not changed her impression of the Davao City Mayor. Her response was quick.


“But what is this talk going around that he is going to shoot his endorsers?” And then she chuckled as if amused. I told her, it will be good if you can talk with the mayor personally.

“But what kind of a man is he? I know that people speaks so highly of him but what is he really. Why the shooting thing?” she pressed on.

I hastened to give Ms. Tiquia a brief description of the man I knew.

People think Duterte as a no-nonsense mayor when it comes to criminality, discipline and orderliness. These are all true. A killer? That’s another story.

To countless child-cancer victims and those who cannot afford hospitalization he is their savior. For the marginalized that want to have a modest source of livelihood he spares them 1/3 of the pedestrian lane. He is a kind and soft-hearted man and this virtue he keeps but cannot be hidden because people speak about it.

In solemn nights especially during the yuletide, the man who mince no words and expletives in addressing criminal elements, would cuddle cancer patients, give them Christmas presents and give shelter to parents watching over their children who are in agony. At the height of a storm he stepped out of his pick-up vehicle then instruct his driver to bring home a distraught mother and her three kids caught in a flooded street.

When his vehicle failed to come back because of the rising flood water he just took a cab home and asked his driver that he too should just go straight home.

Digong is not the kind of man the likes of CHR Etta Rosales and Justice Secretary Leila Delima picture him to be. But true, he drives a taxi in the evening to prowl the city of street gangs, thieves and criminal elements hoping to engage them to a shootout if they opt to fight it out. But isn't it enigmatic that the same man actually sends hundreds of out-of-school-youths to school, stretch the rules and patience to provide opportunity for sidewalk vendors who strive for modest livelihood?

Duterte is far from being a gunslinger or someone with a smoking gun. As a journalist hounding Duterte for years now, I can only cite two instances when and where the mayor pulled the trigger of his gun. This was when convicted killer “alias Pugoy” and fellow inmates gang-raped a missionary and held hostage a little girl which they later killed without mercy. The incident which happened in a detention cell inside a Philippine Constabulary (PC) barracks enraged Duterte who assaulted the prison and fought it out with the armed Pogoy gang.

In another incident, Mayor Duterte along with police and drug enforcers, led the raid of a drug laboratory in Daliao, Toril. The members of the drug syndicate, who turned out to be undocumented Chinese nationals, opted to shoot it out with the lawmen. All the suspects perished. Smoke can still be seen in the barrel of Digong’s gun when they exited out of the laboratory.

The most recent incident did not involve Mayor Duterte but he was on top of the operation. He ordered the shoot-to-kill order to anti-kidnapping operatives that wiped out the entire kidnap-for-ransom syndicate who made the mistake of straggling in Davao City to collect the ransom from a bank.

The victim, a woman trader from Quezon City, was unscathed and lived to tell the story of how Duterte and the police operatives saved her.

It is true that Duterte always gives chance to offenders and other crime suspects to reform or just simply leave the Davao City. The message is simple: “Reform or leave the city vertically or horizontally”. Of course others would rather go swimming in the treacherous waters of Davao Gulf and in the process drown.

source:Sunstar Davao





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