‘Kill bish­ops, all they do is crit­i­cize’ - Duterte

Watchmen Daily Journal - - NATION - (Pia Ranada, Rap­pler.com)

MANILA – In a fresh tirade against the Catholic Church in the guise of a joke, Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte said bish­ops should be "killed" for sup­pos­edly do­ing noth­ing but crit­i­cize his ad­min­is­tra­tion.

Duterte made the re­mark at the start of his speech be­fore re­cip­i­ents of the Pres­i­den­tial Award for Child-friendly Mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties and Cities in Mala­cañang on Wed­nes­day night, De­cem­ber 5.

After reit­er­at­ing that he be­lieved in God, the Pres­i­dent said, "Pero itong mga obispo ninyo, patayin ninyo, walang silbi ‘yang mga gung­gong na ‘yan (But these bish­ops, kill them, those fools are good for noth­ing). All they do is crit­i­cize."

Only a week ago, on Novem­ber 26, Duterte sug­gested that Caloocan Bishop Pablo Vir­gilio David, among the most out­spo­ken Catholic Church lead­ers against his cam­paign against il­le­gal drugs, is him­self into drugs.

This fol­lowed his ac­cu­sa­tion that David was steal­ing money from church cof­fers. David had cat­e­gor­i­cally de­nied the al­le­ga­tions.

Months ago, Duterte had been called out for his ver­bal tirades against priests which had been fol­lowed by a string of brazen mur­ders of priests in dif­fer­ent parts of the coun­try.

Then pres­i­den­tial spokesman Harry Roque had said in Duterte's de­fense that the Pres­i­dent never ac­tu­ally in­cited killings of Catholic Church lead­ers.

His call for the killing of bish­ops on Wed­nes­day was fol­lowed by laugh­ter from his au­di­ence which, based on Pres­i­den­tial Spokesman Sal­vador Panelo's test, would sup­pos­edly show that Duterte was merely jok­ing.

Hu­man rights and mil­i­tant groups have ear­lier called out Duterte for mak­ing off-the­cuff state­ments in­cit­ing vi­o­lence, which had been dis­missed by Palace of­fi­cials as the Pres­i­dent's sig­na­ture hy­per­boles.

In the same speech, Duterte re­peated his ex­pla­na­tion for his con­tro­ver­sial "God is stupid" re­mark, say­ing he never said it.

"What I said is, your God is stupid, mine has a lot of com­mon sense That's what I told the bish­ops," he said.

"The Pres­i­dency is a God-given gift. I am sure God would not have given me the po­si­tion if I was a bull­shit," added Duterte.

(Mala­cañang file photo)

Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte has earned con­dem­na­tion for his threats against priests and re­marks about the Catholic faith.

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