SPEAK no evil.
The public will no longer hear anything–whether good or bad–from President Benigno
Aquino 3rd about his successor, Rodrigo Duterte, “for now,” according to a Malacanang official.
In a text message, Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. on Thursday said the President has since stopped making comments about the incoming government’s plans as the Liberal Party (LP) joined the Duterte bandwagon by being included in the so-called super majority in Congress.
“Let us review his [Aquino] recent interviews. In general, he prefers not to make any comments on the Duterte presidency for now,” Coloma told The Manila Times.
During his most recent interview with online news site, Rappler, Aquino fended off questions on Duterte, saying he has no direct knowledge of what his successor plans to do in the future.
The President’s silence is a stark contrast to his direct attacks on Duterte prior to the May 9 elections.
At one point, Aquino admitted initiating talks between the camp of then Liberal Part (LP) standard-bearer Manuel ‘Mar’ Roxas 2nd and Sen. Grace Poe for a united front against the Davao City mayor.
“I’m trying to get all these different voices from so many sectors together and in that sense, perhaps help our candidates get together and have that united front,” he declared then.
Aquino’s most scathing remarks against Duterte were about the latter doing the opposite of good manners and values.
The mayor is notorious for his tough and oftentimes offensive remarks.
He previously cussed the Church and even “corrupt” members of the media.
Last Wednesday, Coloma and Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, an LP stalwart, said
President Aquino and the party leadership have given their go-signal for members’ exodus to join the so-called super majority in Congress.
“Yes, the decision of [Senate President Franklin Drilon] has clearance from the party hierarchy,” according to Abad, who also told The Manila Times that the LP lawmakers will “generally” support the incoming government’s legislative priorities.
“In general, yes [we will support], especially if the priorities of the new administration sustain the economic growth, promote inclusive development and safeguard the country from the dire consequences of climate change,” he said.
Coloma agreed, saying such decisions that will affect the future of the party must have the imprimatur of its leaders.
“I am affirming [Abad’s] statement that they [House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. and Drilon] consulted the President and the LP leadership and that they received clearance for their respective decisions,” he pointed out.