MANILA - “People Power” may have succeeded in deposing 2 Philippine presidents, but it certainly won’t work against President Rodrigo Duterte, his spokesman said Monday, amid allegations that the chief executive’s foes are plotting to oust him.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque made this statement after the Armed Forces of the Philippines claimed that the communists have mounted a so-called “Red October” plan to oust Duterte.
Brig. Gen. Antonio Parlade, AFP deputy chief of staff for operations, claimed that opposition coalition Tindig Pilipinas almost got involved in the plan but backed out after realizing that communists were behind the move.
Roque said these efforts will not succeed as the President continues to enjoy the mandate of the people, as reflected in the latest survey showing majority support for his war on drugs.
“Iyang ‘People Power’ sinuportahan natin iyan, pero sinuportahan natin iyang People Power ng 1986 kasi ang tinanggal sa pwesto ay wala ng mandato. Hindi niyo po mapi-people power ang taong may mandato,” Roque said in a Palace press briefing.
“When you won by the margin the President had in the elections and when you have this kind of support being shown in the surveys, mahihirapan silang patalsikin.”
Roque said he is no longer surprised that the communists were plotting to oust Duterte, since overthrowing the government has always been the goal of the communist movement since its inception.
“We have no doubts the AFP has intelligence information on this. We have no doubts the CPP-NPA (Communist Party of the Philippines - New People’s Army) has been out to overthrow the government since they were founded. We have no doubts there are power-hungry individuals in the opposition who would like to resort to extra-constitutional means to oust President Duterte and we have no doubts that the Magdalo group is addicted to coup d’ état,” Roque said.
“However, what I will say is we are confident that we enjoy overwhelming support from the people and therefore what these groups would want to see - the ouster of President Duterte - will not happen.”
The President had earlier alleged that the opposition Liberal Party and Magdalo Group have forged an alliance with the communists, something that the three groups have denied.