'Ridiculous': LP rejects Duterte's destab accusation

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 09 2018 12:36 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte speaks after his arrival, from a visit in Israel and Jordan at Davao International airport in Davao City, Saturday. Lean Daval Jr., Reuters

MANILA - The Liberal Party on Sunday rejected President Rodrigo Duterte's claim that it was plotting to remove him from office with the help of communist rebels and Senator Antonio Trillanes IV.

Duterte on Saturday urged the public to watch out for his critics' supposed move to oust him, which he said will "go into a high gear" in October.

"The accusation of destabilization is downright false. It is ridiculous. Dissent is not destabilization," Senator Francis Pangilinan, president of the LP, said in a statement.

"Every time scandals and controversies hound this administration, whether it be corruption issues or issues of incompetent governance, it blames the opposition."

The opposition, he said, does not have to do anything because the government "is doing a good job of destabilizing itself" through its supposed incompetence or corruption.

Pangilinan said the government should focus on rising prices of goods and lack of jobs instead of lobbing "baseless" accusations against critics.

Several lawmakers allied with the President, he noted, have called for the firing of agriculture officials and economic managers amid a rice shortage in some areas and the acceleration of inflation to its highest level in a decade.

"Are they destabilizers too?," Pangilinan said of administration allies that sounded concern on economic woes.

"If the President doesn’t want to listen to the opposition, that’s fine but his own allies are sounding the alarm bells. Malacañang should heed the clamor of its own allies and act decisively to solve the rice crisis," he said.

Duterte accused Trillanes of conniving with rebels and the LP to oust him after he stripped the senator of the amnesty that absolves him of charges for leading 2 failed mutinies.

Trillanes claimed the President's move was meant to silence administration critics. He petitioned the Supreme Court last week to block the withdrawal of his amnesty.