(UPDATED) President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday rejected the use of bulletproof glass in his visit to General Santos City.
Duterte, at the start of his speech, ordered the Presidential Security Group to remove the glass panel to the applause of the audience.
“Kanang kaning samin dili ni pang-cover sa bala. [laughter] Kaning samin ang makita nako ako rang nawong. Ang reflection ani murag nibilib ko sa akong kaugalingon. [laughter] Ang tinuod ani, para di ko mapusilan didto [laughter] Diha,” Duterte said.
(This glass isn’t intended to shield me from bullets. This was placed here so that I can see only my face. The reflection of this means I admire myself so much. But the truth about this is to prevent me from being shot from there.)
"Nganong ako may inyong pusilon nga wa man koy sala ninyo? Pamili mo diri, kadaghan ani oh. [laughter] Puro man ni military nga niadto. Puro general. General, general, general. Kani sa PMA, general. Ayaw ming mga politiko kay gasilbi lang mi ninyo,” he said.
(Why would you shoot me when I did nothing wrong to you? Just choose anyone from them here. They all came from the military. They are all generals. General, general, general. This one is from the PMA, a general. But don’t shoot us politicians because we are just serving you.)
Duterte even threatened to not continue his speech until the glass was removed.
“Tangtanga ra ni. Di ko muistorya. Gusto nako mamatay mo nga --- mamatay ko kamoy pasanginlan. [laughter] Kindly… Nia man koy akong granada. Inig buto ani, labay nako na sa inyo,” he said in jest.
(Kindly remove this. Otherwise I will not speak. I want you to be blamed if I die. Kindly… I have a grenade here. I will throw it to you.)
Brigadier-General Jose Eriel Niembra, commander of the PSG, previously said that the bulletproof glass is part of security protocol when the President speaks in an open arena.
During the campaign period, Duterte usually spoke behind a bulletproof glass whenever he attended campaign rallies.
The President was in General Santos City to distribute 12,548 certificates of land ownership award to agrarian reform beneficiaries. - with a report from Pia Gutierrez, ABS-CBN News