Duterte vows to correct injustices, quips in opening


Rodrigo Duterte, the front runner in the Philippine presidential elections, promised voters a peaceful country if he is elected president, saying that he aims to correct certain injustices in government.

Speaking in the 3rd and last PiliPinas presidential debate, Duterte said the public already knows his many faults, including his predilection for gutter language.

"If you listen to my epithets and my curses and my, you know, bad words, look at my back," he said, adding that there are many Filipinos "on bended knees, hungry and mad at this country for doing nothing."

Duterte noted that he has many plans to improve the lives of Filipinos, joking that he is even willing to copy the plans of his fellow candidates such as Senators Grace Poe and Miriam Defensor Santiago.

"Sanay naman ako mangopya. Grade 1 pa lang, nangongopya na ako," he joked.

Duterte is enjoying a 12-percentage-point lead over his nearest rival, Poe, according to the latest ABS-CBN survey by Pulse Asia taken 3 weeks before the May 9 presidential elections.

The poll was conducted from April 12-17 nationwide on a sample size of 4,000 respondents and an error margin of +/-1.5.

Nationwide, 34% picked Duterte, 12 points ahead of closest rival Senator Grace Poe, who was picked by 22%. Duterte led Poe by 7 points in the April 5-10 survey of ABS-CBN by Pulse Asia.

Poe was followed closely by Vice President Jejomar Binay who was picked by 19%. Administration standard-bearer Mar Roxas was close behind at 18% with Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago closing the list at 2%.