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Thursday, February 22, 2024

Ex-Philippines chief Duterte assails Marcos

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MANILA, Philippines — Former Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is throwing allegations at his successor, Fernando Marcos Jr., and even elevating the prospect of eradicating him from workplace, bringing into the open a long-rumored break up between the 2.

In an expletive-laden speech late Sunday, the previous populist chief alleged Marcos’ legislative allies are plotting to amend the structure to raise time period limits and warned that would result in him being ousted like his father — the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos. Duterte additionally accused Marcos of being a drug addict.

Marcos laughed off Duterte’s allegations, chatting with reporters earlier than he flew to Vietnam for a go to. Marcos stated he wouldn’t dignify the query with a solution, however claimed his predecessor is utilizing fentanyl, a strong opioid.

In 2016, Duterte stated that he had used fentanyl prior to now to ease ache brought on by spinal accidents from a motorcycle accident, however has not acknowledged ongoing use of the drug.

“I believe it’s the fentanyl,” Marcos stated. “Fentanyl is the strongest ache killer that you may purchase. … After 5, six years, it has to have an effect on him that is why I believe that is what has occurred.”

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Members of the Home of Representatives have been speaking about amending the structure, and Duterte claimed with out providing any proof that lawmakers who assist Marcos, together with Home Speaker Martin Romualdez, are bribing native officers to amend the 1987 structure to take away time period limits to allow them to prolong their grip on energy.

Romualdez, who’s the present president’s cousin, has denied that declare, saying he needs the structure amended solely to take away restrictions on international funding.

Marcos has stated he’s open to altering financial provisions of the structure however opposes altering a provision that restricts international possession of land and different vital industries just like the media. Philippine presidents can serve solely a single six-year time period.

Opponents of opening the structure to adjustments embody the Senate. It issued a press release final week warning its checks-and-balance function may very well be undermined if the Home of Representatives proceeded with plans to pursue amendments in joint session fairly than by separate voting within the 24-member Senate and the 316-strong Home.

The 1987 structure, which is laden with safeguards to stop dictatorships, got here into power a 12 months after Marcos’ strongman father was ousted by an army-backed “folks energy” rebellion amid allegations of plunder and human rights atrocities throughout his rule.

The speech put credence into months of rumors a few political break up along with his successor although Duterte’s daughter Sara is Marcos’ vice chairman following their landslide election victory in 2022.

In current weeks, Duterte’s supporters have been angered by studies of an unannounced go to by Worldwide Legal Courtroom investigators final month who’re probing widespread killings through the anti-drug crackdown Duterte launched as president. The reported go to has not been confirmed.

Duterte, who grew to become infamous for the tough crackdown that left hundreds of principally poor suspects {dead}, claimed in his speech with out providing any proof that Marcos was as soon as on a legislation enforcement record of suspected drug customers.

“You, the army, you realize this, we’ve got a president who’s a drug addict,” Duterte stated to cheers from a number of thousand supporters in his southern residence area of Davao metropolis.

The Philippine Drug Enforcement Company stated Monday that Marcos was by no means on such a listing, opposite to Duterte’s declare.

In 2021 when he was a presidential aspirant, his spokesman confirmed two studies from a personal hospital and the nationwide police laboratory that individually stated Marcos examined unfavorable for cocaine and methamphetamine.

The 2 males even have variations over international coverage.

Whereas Duterte nurtured cozy ties with Chinese language President Xi Jinping and Russian chief Vladimir Putin whereas in workplace, Marcos has been seen as veering towards Washington because of his nation’s territorial disputes with China within the South China Sea. Early final 12 months, Marcos allowed an enlargement of the U.S. army presence within the Philippines beneath a 2014 protection pact.

Marcos succeeded Duterte in mid-2022 after successful election campaigning on a promise to work for an financial turnaround after the coronavirus pandemic and produce unity in a rustic lengthy saddled by crushing poverty and deeply entrenched political divisions.

Marcos led his personal rally Sunday at a seaside park in Manila, which police stated drew about 400,000 folks after dusk.

The rally was referred to as to launch what Marcos says is a marketing campaign for a “new Philippines” by reforming corrupt and inefficient governance and boosting public companies. In the course of the gathering, the president stayed nonconfrontational within the face of the escalating criticisms from Duterte’s camp.

“The ‘new Philippines’ isn’t just a slogan,” Marcos instructed cheering supporters. “To these whose overheated creativeness has been poisoned by poisonous politics, the `new Philippines’ is not any Computer virus, it conceals no agenda.”

Addressing authorities officers and workers, Marcos referred to as for an finish to sluggish companies to the general public. “Misery calls should be responded to directly. In no matter authorities workplace, crimson tape should be changed with a crimson carpet,” he stated to applause.

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