Philippine Daily Inquirer


- JOSE MARIO DE VEGA, University of the Philippine­s,

SO after two weeks of being missing in action and engaging in his usual disappeari­ng act, the President has finally shown himself. Not bothered a bit by his Houdini-style “leadership,” President Duterte even justified his action: “Noong nawala ako ng ilang araw, talagang sinadya ko yun. Pag kinakalkal mo ako, parang bata, pag lalo mo akong kinakantya­wan e mas lalo akong gagana…”

Is this the president of a republic, or a spoiled brat? Mr. Duterte’s actuations, demeanor, and overall conduct are unworthy of the Office of the President. Instead of talking about the problems of the nation, he utilized his time-tested technique of engaging in diversion. Millions of our countrymen are unemployed and a great number have lost their jobs and income due to the ECQ, but rather than using his power and virtual platform to unite the people and give them hope and inspiratio­n, the President instead once again threw a tantrum.

Consider the letter of a young student from Baguio: Dear President Duterte, At home, we are told to respect one another. There are words that we are not allowed to say. Sometimes I hear you on television. I am shocked at how you curse and badmouth others.

As president, don’t you think you should be a role model for good manners and right conduct? I hope that you will change your attitude. Then maybe I will respect you more. Thank you. Sincerely yours,


I believe it is the right time for Filipinos to call out Mr. Duterte and his enablers, to tell them that enough is enough. If they cannot do their jobs, it is time for them to come clean. In this time of crisis, what we need are leaders who will tell us the truth and do the right thing. The truth, in fact, is that the emperor has no clothes, and the right thing for him to do is to resign.

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