Du30 — from Davao to the world stage



PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte has really gone a long way since the days that he was mayor of Davao City. Barely four months in Malacañang, he has already created waves in Southeast Asia and, starting today, in China.

His state visit to China is a most propitious one, with the easing of tension in the West Philippine Sea/South China Sea and revitalization of Philippine-Chinese relations expected to be the most immediate benefits.

The renewed friendship with China appears to be the start of the Duterte administration’s new foreign policy of distancing itself from the United States and other countries that have criticized his bloody war against illegal drugs. Don’t criticize how he wages this war and you’ll be in his good graces. Criticize it and he’ll forget decades of friendship.

The official rationale for this pivot to China and away from the US is the desire to blaze an independent foreign policy. The President said, to the glee of his millions of rabid followers, that the Philippines can survive without foreign aid.

When he returns from China, he’ll be enumerating the billions of dollars that China will have pledged to give to the Philippines in investments, loans and other forms of assistance. Aren’t we glad to have a President who wants Filipinos to survive without seeking help from foreigners?

That President Duterte has gone a long way since his days as Davao City mayor is also seen in his willingness to take on anybody or any organization that dares criticize him. He once said that he didn’t do so well in college. Now, he is even inviting the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Summary Executions and the International Criminal Court to come to the Philippines and investigate the alleged extra-judicial killings (EJK) of suspected drug users and pushers.

The invitation comes with a condition: that he be allowed to cross-examine them after their investigation. He expressed confidence that with his years as prosecutor, he could embarrass anyone who asserts that there is EJK in the country. Indeed, the Philippines is most fortunate to have a President brainy enough to debate with UN and International Criminal Court officials. But what if they reject his arguments? Well, he can always call them names.

No doubt, the President’s confidence in tangling with world leaders is bolstered by the strong support he gets in his home court — 64% according to the Social Weather Stations, 91% according to Pulse Asia, and 97% according to a program on TV5. I prefer to use 97%. That’s the survey cited by Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre — and Aguirre said he can spot a liar within 10 minutes.

Ping Lacson and the ‘hawi boys’
A recent news report said Sen. Ping Lacson was a victim of the “hawi boys” of a government official in a hurry to attend a Senate committee hearing. The report was sketchy. However, it reminds me of a similar incident involving Senator Ping 12 years ago.

It was June 4, 2004 at about 9:35 a.m. Senator Ping was at the foot of the Tramo overpass in Pasay City, when his car and those of others were shunted to the side by the motorcycle escorts of General Alexander Yano who was in a convoy of three cars, and with siren blaring.

General Yano, who had just been named AFP chief o staff, was rushing to attend his confirmation hearing by the Commission on Appointments — and Ping was a member.

At the hearing, Ping gave Yano an earful: “This will not cost you your confirmation but I had the opportunity of wearing in 1999 the four stars you are about to wear. I was probably more powerful than you are now but I was not allowing my escorts to cut vehicles along the way unless extremely necessary.”

He remarked that people detest the arrogance and high-handedness of officials and their escorts who act as if they’re the king of the road, especially when traffic is heavy.

This anecdote reveals the kind of leader Senator Ping is. It took place 12 years ago but I’m sure he still remains sensitive to the feelings of others, especially the ordinary citizen.

Oh yes, I must add that he has the backbone to voice out the dictates of his conscience and will not be a “yes” man to anybody.

Briefly noted:
• Why is it that the convicts who testified before the House Committee on Justice were not wearing the standard orange prison garb?

This made it difficult for spectators to distinguish them from congressmen who weren’t in business suits. Apparel aside, congressmen were identifiable by their hysterics and histrionics before the TV camera.

•From Sen. Kiko Pangilinan, after reading that 4,000 drug addicts and users had surrendered in Davao City under Operation “Tokhang.”

“If the Davao City anti-illegal drugs campaign did not succeed in stamping out and eliminating pushers and addicts under President Duterte’s 24-year stint as mayor, what makes us think that the national campaign against illegal drugs will succeed in six months, extended by another six months?



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  1. “Du30- from Davao City to the world stage”

    Headline should read-

    “Du30- from Davao City to the world’s stooge”

  2. No doubt Du30 is being well compensated for his friendship by the morally superior Chinese.

  3. The term independence in a socio-political arena is a concept of desire towards self-determination of a place or a nation. In the reality of the existence of people and place either from within the nation itself we would know that independence is not what the real desire of people and the place. The interdependence of places and people are the most real one and the most desirable for everyone to accomplish in their places in many areas of the people socio-economic and educational activities. The mere fact that Du30 is doing his pivot also to China is sign that interdependency is one that is real and needed. You might not believe to tell you that China is the country that has the highest numbers of students sent to USA every year to study in the American Academic institution for China global market. Mr. Danao tell Du30 he is not on the right path of slicing out USA in his new diplomatic ourse that he called off in his government- that is craziness! DU30 should read what is happening in China at the back geo-politics of China with among nations. Chinese leaders are preparing their own people for this globalization period and they are sending thousands of student to study in the American Academic Instituttions to prepare China and sustains China economic activities with its counterpart in the Western World. Where are you punching Mr. President DU30?

  4. Daniel B. Laurente on

    Just think about it anyway since it is peaceful there. It might be those still on the drugs are so silent during the period and just avoid committing crimes but they are being monitored. Feeling in that way being monitored then being tokhang ( knock three times like the song of the 60s ) means they are on the cross hair. So to avoid being unnecessarily put 6ft underground it was time for them to surface voluntarily so the number just came out. At least they succumb to the pressure and surrender peacefully.

  5. What has this Pangilinan done other than embolden and give license to gangs to use minors in their criminal activities.
    Remember his wife was paid to do concerts at the NBP !!!

  6. Leodegardo Pruna on

    The problem we are having is made complicated by Kiko with his law on minors copied from the U.S. Minors are being used as pawns by drug lords and criminals because of Kiko. Kiko is also known as “Noted senator” because that was the only word he could utter during an electoral hearing/protest. No more damage please Kiko. God bless the Philippines.

  7. Efren L. Danao Maraming salamat! Malaki po ang maitutulong ng iyong sinulat sa ‘nation-building. Kiko Pangilinan: shut your mouth, kung wala iyong misis, Sharon, mananalo ka ba, Mr. Noted at balimbing na balimbing. Buti pa sa inyo si Miriam Santiago, Bongbong at Joker, diba?

  8. Look at what is happening clearly and you can understand that DU30 is a very smart man. He wanted the PH to become friends with China. They only recognized us as a nation being led by Aquino, a US puppet. He demonstrated to everyone that he is no puppet of the US or anyone. China recognized that DU30 is a man they could have friendly talks with. They welcome him with open arms. The words and the criticism used on the US and the UN was meant to show his independence and the independence of the PH. The US grimaced at what he said while China smiled. The point was driven home. Once the US realizes that they can’t remove DU30 from office, real talks with the US will happen. But, this time it will not be owner/slave talks, it will be talks between independent nations.