Not realizing the Ambassador of Mexico to the Philippines was in the audience, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte on Friday asked the crowd at the SMX Convention Center if they will travel to a country known for its drug trade.
“Bakit pupunta ka ba sa Mexico ngayon? Are you going to Mexico with all the kidnappings and killings there? Drugs. Colombia. Everywhere. America,” he said before the members of the National Association of Independent Travel Agencies.
At this point, he stopped as the organizers signaled that Ambassador Julio Camarena Villaseñor was seating beside Senator Alan Peter Cayetano in the audience. Villaseñor just looked calm. The crowd realized what's going on and started giggling.
“Yes, the Ambassador is there. I am sorry,” he replied.
“But certainly there are places in LA [Los Angeles, California, USA] and New York that you cannot go,” he said as the crowd started cheering.
Cayetano was seen speaking to Villaseñor, who had a faint smile.
“It could be anywhere. It could be Russia. It could be Egypt,” he added.
Then he went on about how cruel the world is with illegal drugs being traded everywhere.
The crowd recovered and stopped laughing. Duterte continued his speech, talking about the importance of improving safety in boosting tourism.
“If I am there, I can assure you safety, hindi lang sa turista, but for everybody,” he said.
To do so, he said the illegal drug trade in the country should be suppressed--the anchor of his bid for the presidency. He even expressed how much he hates those involved in the illegal drug trade.
“Anong nagawa ng Pilipino sa inyo? Bakit n'yo pinapakain ang anak namin ng droga?” he said.
After he was informed about Villaseñor's presence, Duterte still warned of the Philippines becoming like Mexico if the government allows the illegal drug trade to thrive in the country.
“Given the drug scare now, you wait for another five to seven years, and you will see it in the provinces, something like Mexico. We have to stop it,” he said. — BAP, GMA News