The people need to follow the President elected by majority of the electorate even if he's "a son of a bitch", President Rodrigo Duterte indicated on Saturday.
Duterte made the remark as he explained that he was ready to talk peace with the Communist Party of the Philippines-National Democratic Front but indicated being turned off by their want of what he called a coalition government.
"Because in this country, we are a democracy. Ang sabi ng Constitution, ang sabi ng flag, we have the sovereignty as a people," Duterte said in a speech before the soldiers of the Western Mindanao Command in Zamboanga City.
"But since we cannot exercise that sovereign power at all times together, we give it to people who are elected by the nation. So maski na ang napili mo son of a bitch na Presidente, eh kung 'yun ang pinili ng tao, wala tayong magawa," he added.
"We'll just bear it and obey him... 'Wag naman 'yang illegal o unlawful," Duterte said.
Duterte said all he wanted was to protect the people and preserve the nation, citing the threats of terrorism and illegal drugs.
"Ang atin naman is one, is to protect the people; second is to preserve the nation. 'Yan lang man ang tanungin mo. Is it to preserve the nation? Is it to protect the people? Hanggang diyan lang tayo eh," Duterte said.
"And you obey, sabi ko, maski sinong elected diyan," he added.
The President admitted he had particularly been tough on the New People's Army and those involved in drug crimes but said he will not back down.
"‘Pag mag-atras ako dito sa droga, mag-atras ako dito sa terorismo, at mag-atras ako sa NPA, this generation—`yung generation natin, kami, kami, we would have failed to save the Republic and compromise the next, ‘yung anak ninyo pati ‘yung apo ninyo," said Duterte.
"We would have compromised the next generation of Filipinos. Sila na ang makipag-away. Eh hindi na natin alam kung sino. I'm not trying to say alam natin lahat, tayo lahat. Pero hindi natin alam ang bukas eh," he added.
"Sabi ko nga, if you have been to elect a son of a bitch, you will just have to... Ngayon kung ‘yung son of a bitch, p— ina, walang alam, patay na. Mahirapan ang Pilipino. Tapusin natin ito sa panahon natin," Duterte said.
After Duterte terminated peace talks and formally declared the CPP-NPA as a terrorist organization in December, the Department of Justice (DOJ) recently filed a petition with a Manila court to legally declare the CPP-NPA a terrorist group.
Duterte had also renewed his ultimatum with certain mayors who he said were using their posts as a platform to carry out illegal drug operations. —Margaret Claire Layug/NB, GMA News