DUTERTE'S ADDRESS TO BE 'SHOWBIZ-TYPE' PRESS CON
MANILA (2nd UPDATE) - President Rodrigo Duterte will address the nation on Tuesday, the Palace said, amid issues hounding the government, including the soaring prices of food due to the quickening inflation and the revocation of Senator Antonio Trillanes IV’s amnesty.
“He announced in Davao that he wants to speak to the nation. It is scheduled for tomorrow afternoon,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said.
Roque, however, said he does not know yet what the President will exactly say in his address and that he would want to speak first with the chief executive. The address is scheduled at 3 p.m. in Malacañang.
Special Assistant to the President Bong Go said Duterte's address will be a "showbiz-type" press conference.
"Ang plano nga, si Atty. (Sal) Panelo ang kaniyang co-host...So medyo magiging showbiz-type po ito na press con," Go said in a press conference Monday afternoon.
"Idea ni Atty. Panelo 'yung concept, so it will be [a] glamorous discussion," he added.
Inflation hit 6.4 percent in August, smashing the 5.9 percent predicted by the Department of Finance and polls from Bloomberg and Reuters. Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Nestor Espenilla said it was his "expectation" that it would not breach 6 percent.
Inflation stayed at its fastest in nearly 10 years and moved closer to 6.6 percent, last recorded in March 2009.
Duterte has blamed United States President Donald Trump’s trade spat with China for the rise of food prices in the Philippines.
Duterte has also drawn flak for voiding Trillanes’ amnesty.
Duterte voided Trillanes' amnesty on August 31 and ordered the restoration of criminal and administrative charges against the lawmaker. His proclamation was made public on Tuesday last week.
The proclamation said Trillanes’ amnesty was void from the beginning because the soldier-turned-senator did not file an Official Amnesty Application Form and also "never expressed his guilt for the crimes that were committed.”
Trillanes has disputed the arguments presented by the proclamation as well as the pronouncements of government and military officials about his cases.