Duterte assures businessmen in Qatar of corruption-free deals in PH

Ron Gagalac, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 16 2017 02:53 PM | Updated as of Apr 16 2017 03:41 PM

President Duterte grants a photo opportunity as he is swarmed by supporters upon his arrival in Doha, Qatar on April 14, 2017. Rene Lumawag, Malacañang Photo

QATAR-President Rodrigo Duterte assured businessmen here that he will not tolerate corruption in government and among investors in the Philippines.

Speaking to Filipinos in Qatar on Saturday, Duterte said while there is a notion that problems often happen with contracts in the Philippines, such problems would not happen under his watch.

"We will honor contracts. We will honor our obligations. That is in the Constitution itself that there shall be no impairment of the obligation of contracts. So insofar as trade is concerned I can assure you, what we sign and I agree with you will be done even if we lose in the transaction, we will honor what we have promised," Duterte said.

Duterte is in Qatar for the last leg of his state visits to 3 Middle East countries--the other two being Saudi Arabia and Bahrain.

He also told his audience to "shoot" any corrupt officials from the Bureau of Internal Revenue and Bureau of Customs that will take advantage of them when they do business in the Philippines.

"I give you the authority to… If somebody from the Internal Revenues, Customs would ask you even P10, shoot him." the President said before a large contingent from the Qatar business sector.

"Everything will be all right. Everything will be followed. There will be no harassment. There will be no asking of money. It will be a truly honest to goodness transaction," he added.

Duterte said it is in the national interest of the Philippines to see the Qatari investments stable. 

And just like in Bahrain, he told Qatari businessmen that he is even willing to send some Filipino troops in Qatar in case they need in times of conflict.

"If you are in trouble, if you are short with manpower, I have a very disciplined military and I can send them here. You will not have any trouble with them. They are law abiding, well-disciplined and they can stay here, just to send them to the borders." he said.

"But I would like to ask you to just feed them because we don't have the money to spend to --- for their food. But give them shelters and they will fight for you. I said we will stand by you." he added.

Duterte said there is no need for him to ask the permission of America since the Philippines is an independent country. 

"There are millions of Filipinos here. You can be sure that if you need us, we will come here. Do not worry about discipline. I said my army is… Just like any other army in the world, they are very disciplined. And they can fight. Fight our national interest here and to protect and defend you." he said.

The President also assured the businessmen that the country's problems on insurgency is under control by his administration. 

He said he is already talking to leaders of rebels and communist groups to attain lasting peace in the entire nation, although he admitted that the Islamic State remains a problem also in the Philippines.

"We do not have any trouble with the rebellions now. But what we have inherited, all of us in this world, is the violent ideology of the ISIS. They are here, they are in Mindanao, and they anointed a leader of the Abu Sayyaf, and these are the group down South that would continue to behead everybody which you see on TV," he said.