PH re­jects UK aid af­ter tirade vs for­eign in­ter­fer­ence

Manila Bulletin - - Front Page -

The Philip­pines has re­jected a mul­ti­mil­lion dol­lar as­sis­tance from the United King­dom (UK), Pres­i­dent Duterte an­nounced last Thurs­day fol­low­ing his tirade against for­eign in­ter­fer­ence in lo­cal af­fairs.

The Pres­i­dent as­sured that the coun­try could sur­vive with­out the “$18 mil­lion-$20 mil­lion” aid from the UK, as­sert­ing that he has con­trol over the coun­try’s for­eign pol­icy.

“The lat­est word from Sonny and sa Great Bri­tain, 18 mil­lion dol­lars, 20. Sabi ko kay Sonny Dominguez, ’Wag mong tang­gapin. Mabubuhay rin tayo [I told Sonny Dominguez, ‘Do not ac­cept it. We will sur­vive],” the Pres­i­dent said dur­ing the launch of the ren­o­vated Mala­cañang press briefing room.

“Any­way, I con­trol the for­eign af­fairs of this govern­ment. So ‘yung mga diyan mga noisy na [those noisy groups say­ing] ‘The Philip­pines will go hun­gry,” in your ig­no­rance, you are not the one who’d for­mu­late the for­eign pol­icy of this coun­try,” he said.

Duterte main­tained that han­dling the coun­try’s for­eign af­fairs was “solely the priv­i­lege of the Ex­ec­u­tive depart­ment,” not Con­gress and the Supreme Court.

“The con­duct of ex­ter­nal af­fairs of this coun­try is not in Con­gress. It’s not in the Supreme Court. It is the pres­i­dency in the great sep­a­ra­tions of pow­ers,” he said. “‘Wag mo nang tang­gapin ‘yan sila [Do not ac­cept them],” he added.

The govern­ment pre­vi­ously de­clined some for­eign grants that came with con­di­tions that may in­ter­fere with the coun­try’s in­ter­nal poli­cies.

The Pres­i­dent’s re­jec­tion of the UK as­sis­tance came af­ter he lashed out at the Euro­pean Union (EU) for sup­pos­edly seek­ing the coun­try’s re­moval from the United Na­tions over the bru­tal war on drugs. But the EU has al­ready clar­i­fied that it has not moved to ex­pel the Philip­pines from the UN.

“You are in­ter­fer­ing in our af­fairs kasi mahi­rap lang kami [be­cause we are poor],” he said.

“Mag­bi­gay kayo ng pera [You give money] then you start to or­ches­trate what things should be done and which should not hap­pen in my coun­try,” he added.

In the same speech, the Pres­i­dent ques­tioned the Euro­peans’ crit­i­cisms over the drug-re­lated deaths in the coun­try when they were in­volved in the “mas­sacre” of mil­lions dur­ing the first world war.

“Re­mem­ber, you, Euro­peans, all by your­selves, by your lone­some selves, you started the First World War. Id­i­na­may ninyo ang Mid­dle East be­cause you were the great col­o­niz­ers between 1813 to 1816,” he said.

“You mas­sa­cred – pareho kayo Euro­peans and the Arabs that you took in as your armies. You killed, slaugh­tered each other, 15 mil­lion stupid Euro­peans died be­cause of you,” he said.

Duterte then asked the EU if the “moral­ity of right and wrong” then was dif­fer­ent from to­day’s moral­ity.

“Why don’t you start scratch­ing your head? And find out… Kung mag-ano kayo. You will be ex­cluded in the UN? P **** i** ninyo, gawin ninyo,” he said.

“Those who are ob­sessed with the af­fairs of other coun­tries and in­ter­fer­ing, I would tell them that ‘Do not do it or else I’d start look­ing at you,” he said. (Genalyn D. Kabiling)

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