‘Nakakakilabot’ – Sereno on Duterte’s defending deal with China
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte’s defending his verbal agreement with Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2016 allowing Chinese access to the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone gave former Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno goosebumps.
“Nakakakilabot ang ginagawa nila. Para bang handa silang ibenta tayo nang hindi natin alam,” Sereno said, replying to questions from reporters after her speech at the United People’s State of the Nation Address (Sona), which was held on Monday, the same day that the President was giving his fourth Sona.
[What they’re doing gave me goosebumps. It’s like they’re ready to sell us without us knowing about it.]
Still speaking in Filipino, she added: “I hope he will see that the morale of the Filipinos has become so low. It’s shocking to know that it seems we were abandoned only to provide the needs of China in the West Philippine Sea.”
During his Sona, the President said: “[The] West Philippine Sea is ours… no ifs and buts.”
But he also said the Philippines would have to “temper it with the times and the realities that we face today.”
Sereno was ousted as chief justice in 2018 through a quo warranto petition initiated by Solicitor General Jose Calida.
The President denied involvement in the ouster, but Sereno said the President wanted her out of the Supreme Court.
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