MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday said martial law imposed by the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos did not improve the lives of Filipinos.
Duterte issued this statement amid rumors that his government is painting a picture of lawlessness so he can declare martial law.
He, however, said he is not keen on imposing martial law as this will only bring suffering.
"Kung manggaling sa akin ang martial law, kalokohan iyan. Nag-martial law nga tayo noon, anong nangyari? Gumaling ba ang buhay natin? Hanggang ngayon wala," he said.
(They say I will declare martial law. That's foolishness. We had martial law before, what happened? Did it improve our lives? Until now no.)
"Kaya itong mga taga-Maynila, akala nila siguro, hinihintay nila na magalit ako, t**g i*a martial law dito, martial law doon. Barilan dito, barilan doon. Pag-alis ako dumami ang patay lalo. You build a nation over the dead bones of the Moro and Christians"
(These people from Manila, they think, expect that I will be angered and declare martial law and when I leave more will be left dead. You build a nation over the dead bones of the Moro and Christians.")
The president has been criticized for openly admiring the late dictator and allowing the latter's burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. His critics said this move is an indication that Duterte has authoritarian tendencies.