Who’s crazy? Palace, Tril­lanes swap charges

The Philippine Star - - NEWS - By ALEXIS ROMERO – With Edith Regalado

The word war be­tween the ad­min­is­tra­tion and Sen. An­to­nio Tril­lanes IV con­tin­ued yes­ter­day as Mala­cañang said the op­po­si­tion sen­a­tor might have been re­fer­ring to him­self when he called Pres­i­dent Duterte “crazy.”

Last week, Tril­lanes ac­cused Duterte of over­turn­ing the coun­try’s jus­tice sys­tem af­ter gov­ern­ment pros­e­cu­tors charged him with grave threats over his al­leged con­fronta­tion with La­bor Un­der­sec­re­tary Jac­into Paras in the Se­nate last year.

Tril­lanes then called Duterte “baliw” (crazy) for sup­pos­edly or­der­ing his al­lies to file cases against him.

Pres­i­den­tial spokesman Sal­vador Panelo said Tril­lanes’ at­tack against Duterte was a “dis­torted” ar­gu­ment.

“Sen­a­tor Tril­lanes’ lat­est at­tack against the Pres­i­dent, even call­ing him baliw be­cause crim­i­nal charges have been filed against him for his trans­gres­sions, is a dis­torted if not fal­la­cious ar­gu­men­ta­tion. When he de­scribed (Pres­i­dent Duterte) as baliw, he must have been re­fer­ring to him­self and cor­rectly so,” Panelo said in a state­ment.

Panelo said Duterte’s 81 per­cent ap­proval rat­ing in a re­cent Pulse Asia poll should serve as a timely re­minder to the “ra­bid” po­lit­i­cal op­po­si­tion that their as­saults against the Pres­i­dent and his ad­min­is­tra­tion “are fall­ing flat on their faces.”

“Sen­a­tor Tril­lanes’ rants go against the sen­ti­ments of 81 per­cent of Filipinos ap­prov­ing the Pres­i­dent’s per­for­mance and the 76 per­cent trust­ing him as our Chief Ex­ec­u­tive. He pompously claims he is not afraid of fac­ing the crim­i­nal suits against him but his par­ti­san vo­cif­er­ous rant­ings show that he is in mor­tal fear of go­ing back to jail,” he added.

Panelo said the “po­lit­i­cal noise” is ex­pected to es­ca­late fur­ther as the midterm elec­tions near.

“The hand­writ­ing on the wall as graph­i­cally shown by sur­vey fig­ures is glar­ing. Our peo­ple are fed up with the de­struc­tive pol­i­tick­ing dished out by the op­po­si­tion and crit­ics and de­trac­tors. Filipinos want to main­tain the vis­i­ble and con­tin­u­ing gen­uine change,” he said.

He chal­lenged the op­po­si­tion to en­gage the ad­min­is­tra­tion in a healthy de­bate of pro­grams and plat­forms that would ben­e­fit Filipinos.

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