MANILA (UPDATE) - President Rodrigo Duterte has fired back at the critics of his administration’s response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Ito lang ang tanong ko.... Ano ang nagawa ninyo para sa bayan? ’Yan lang,” he said in a public address broadcast late Thursday night.
“Kayo, what have you done for the country except to talk and criticize and talk?”
The President likened his critics to "snakes".
“Sa Mindanao maraming ahas, pero hindi ko alam na karamihan cobra lumipat na dito,” Duterte said.
“Kita mo nagdadaldal. ’Yan, mga kobra. Walang ginawa kundi maghintay, magkagat, just to be able to open his or her mouth, para sabihin alam lahat.”
In his address that lasted 50 minutes, Duterte instead urged those who criticized him to follow the government’s guidelines against COVID-19.
“Itong mga nagbabatikos naman. There will always be a time for everything and I hope the next magsabi ako, maniwala kayo. Kasi po ako magsabi walang politika, hindi na po ako makatakbo,” he said.
“For so many years, ilang taon na silang nandiyan. Puro posturing, puro porma, pa pretty boy, marami ’yan.
“Huwag kayong makinig diyan. Dito kayo makinig sa gobyerno. Tutal ako ang nagdadala. I’m telling you we’re doing everything.”
Former Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV, one of Duterte's fiercest critics, lashed out on Thursday night.
"Four trillion ang budget mo, tapos hahanapan mo ako ng ambag? Batukan kaya kita," he wrote on Twitter.
This year's spending plan is 9 percent higher than the P3.76 trillion budget for 2019.
To date, the novel coronavirus has infected 5,660 persons in the country, the highest among Southeast Asian countries as of Thursday.