MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said he has largely chosen to “shut up” instead of repeatedly addressing repeated allegations against him.
Allegations that Duterte led a death squad during his more than 20-year reign as mayor of Davao City have refused to die. This week, a retired police officer testified before the Senate that he carried out orders to kill from the former mayor.
Duterte said the retired policeman’s allegations are lies, and maintained that the only killings he sanctioned as mayor were for criminals who shot it out with cops.
“I’m facing so many allegations, some are invented but some are true. Walang problema iyan (That's not a problem). I admit many died along the way for the 23 years akong mayor, but never was a time I executed a person kneeling down or with his hands pleading,” Duterte said in a speech in Pasay City.
The president said, he has opted to carry on with his job as the country’s leader instead of constantly reading and then responding to the allegations against him.
He said, he has adopted the philosophy of the late US President Abraham Lincoln when it comes to dealing with criticisms.
"While I have consistently refused to answer because pabalik-balik na lang kasi, the norm of conduct of the opposite side, wala ka nang magawa eh, except to shut up," he said.
“Sabi nga ni Lincoln, and it’s my favorite adage, and it is good for you to remember, ‘If I were to try to read, much less answer, all attacks made on me, this shop might as well be closed for any other business. I do the very best I can and I mean to keep doing so until the end. If the end brings me out all right, what is said against me won’t amount to anything, but if the end brings me out wrong, ten angels of god swearing I was right could make no difference,’” Duterte said.