‘What kind of stupidity is this?’
CHALLENGING China to a fistfight and a gun duel? Is that the kind of leadership you have?
This was the gist of Liberal Party standard-bearer Mar Roxas’ latest tirade against Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte who said he would rather challenge China to a fistfight or a gun duel than send soldiers and policemen to fight the Asian giant over the disputed West Philippine Sea.
“May bagong pahayag si Mayor Duterte tungkol sa foreign policy. Pupunta daw siya ng Tsina at sasabihin niya sa Tsina, suntukan na lang o barilan. ‘Yan ang kanyang tugon sa problema sa West Philippine Sea,” Roxas said in a press conference witnessed by local officials of Alubijid municipality in Misamis Oriental on Wednesday.
Without mincing words, Roxas told Duterte: “Anong kagaguhan ito? Ganoon ba ang uri ng pamumuno na dadalhin mo sa ating bansa? Suntukan at barilan, ‘yan ba ang sagot mo sa lahat ng suliranin ng ating bansa at ng ating mga kababayan?”
Roxas went all out in criticizing Davao City mayor, from his deviant behavior to his campaign promises as he underscored the following points:
-Duterte’s unclear plan on how to solve the country’s crime and drug problem in six months
-his “foolish” stand on the West Philippine Sea dispute with China
-his habit of cursing government officials and women, and
-his use of terms describing lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders (LGBT) to attack his rivals
The former Interior secretary reminded Duterte that being the country’s commander-in-chief is a tough job. And being the highest ranking officer in the country, one should not put his people’s lives at risk.
“Hindi isinusubo sa alanganin ang ating mga tropa na basta-basta lamang, o dahil lamang sa mga salitang pasiga-siga, o para lamang sa loss of face mo. Buhay ang nakataya dito. Bansa natin ang nakataya dito. Hindi ito nalulutas dahil lamang hahamunin mo sila,” he said.
Roxas even added: “Eh ako nga hinamon mo, pinalagan kita, umatras ka naman,” referring to his erstwhile pal’s challenge to a fistfight after Duterte questioned the authenticity of Roxas’ Wharton degree.
But a confident Roxas said he is sure that Filipinos will not accept Duterte’s brand of leadership.
“‘Yan ba ang foreign policy mo? ‘Yan ba ang uri ng pamumuno na dadalhin mo sa ating bansa? Hindi papayag ang mga Pilipino sa ganoong uri, sa ganoong klase ng pamumuno,” he said.
Subscribe to our global nation newsletter
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.