BEIJING - President Rodrigo Duterte said Friday he would feed coins to government officials who extort from businessmen.
The tough-talking President made the statement Friday as he addressed Chinese investors in a business forum organized by the Department of Trade and Industry here.
In his speech, Duterte noted his administration’s efforts against corruption, as he assured the Chinese traders that their investments would be safe in the Philippines.
He said they could run to him should they encounter corrupt government officials.
“So if you encounter or your agents or your lawyers would tell you that this official is asking for something like this DPWH (Department of Public Works and Highways) or whatever, you just tell me and I will call that official whoever he is in my office and in your presence,” Duterte said.
“And kindly bring some money, old money and coins with you. I will tell the officials to eat the money and swallow the coins in your presence.”
“I am not joking. I have done it several times and perhaps I will do more until and unless the bureaucracy of the Philippines behaves. So that is one,” he added.
The President also noted the cases of kidnapping of Chinese nationals in the Philippines, saying that he has asked the Chinese government to help Philippine authorities address the problem.
Duterte also warned the Chinese businessmen looking to invest in the Philippines not to get involved in drugs and other crime.
“So for those who are into drugs, crimes, I am just asking them: please avoid the Philippines because if you destroy my country with drugs, cocaine and everything, I will kill you. Period,” he said.
Duterte also attended on Friday opening ceremonies of the FIBA World Cup at the National Aquatic Center in Beijing with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
He then flew to Guangzhou province to attend the first game of Gilas Pilipinas against Team Italy Friday.