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Duterte eyes sale of gov't assets if COVID-19 funds not enough

President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday said he would consider selling the assets of the Philippine government if its funds for the fight against COVID-19 and for the assistance to affected Filipinos run out.

"Pag maubos talaga ang pera, ipabili ko lahat ng propiyedad ng gobyerno. Iyang Cultural Center, PICC, yung lupa diyan. Totoo," Duterte said in a briefing aired at past midnight on Thursday.

"Kapag wala na akong makuha and we are about to sink, and really sink, I will sell all the assets of government tapos itulong ko sa tao," he added.

Duterte said the hundreds of billions of pesos earmarked for the government's response against COVID-19 was still being collected.

"Ako magbigay ako sa inyo ng hope. For the time na nandito ako, ako ang kontrol, ibigay ko lahat o kaya ipagbili ko lahat... Ngayon ibibigay ko sa inyo 'yan and do not worry about the money," Duterte said.

Duterte said that he would even allow members of the opposition to negotiate the sale of the assets. 

"Ibibigay ko sa opposition... Sige kayo ang mag-negotiate para wala kayong duda sa amin," Duterte said.

On Wednesday, the number of COVID-19 cases climbed to a national total of 3,870 with 182 fatalities and 94 recoveries. -NB, GMA News