BAGUIO CITY: President Rodrigo Duterte has asked the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) to reveal his net worth following allegations by Sen. Antonio Trillanes 4th that he has hidden wealth.
At dinner with the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Class of 1967 on Friday night, the President shrugged off Trillanes’ claim the previous day that from 2005 to 2016, Duterte and his family accumulated some P2.4 billion in bank accounts.
He challenged the senator to ask the AMLC to sue him, and repeated a vow to quit the presidency if the charges turned out to be true.
“It’s pure garbage but you know, I’m President. I’ve ordered AMLC and everybody to give information about what’s my worth in this, in terms of pesos in this planet. So I will not put you in shame,” Duterte said.
“No one from my children or not even me, I have not signed any voucher even for myself. I only receive a salary and that’s it. I do not accept my allowances. I don’t. I avoided it and it will be so until the end of my term,” he added.
“Just to make clear, it’s a matter of principle also and honor. I said during the campaign that if any of my family or even me would be involved in corruption in government, you can be sure you have my word, I will resign immediately.”
Trillanes first revealed Duterte’s alleged unexplained wealth during the campaign period for the 2016 polls, but despite the controversy, the former mayor of Davao City became the country’s 16th president after winning the elections be a wide margin.
On Saturday, Duterte urged alumni of the PMA to continue upholding the values of the institution amid his word war with Trillanes, a former navy officer and a PMA alumnus.
Speaking before the yearly PMA alumni homecoming, Duterte said he believed the military would not taint its reputation, citing its “template of discipline and civility.”
“While I never pretended to be a saint, I know that righteousness and discipline are the foundation of the nation. That is why what I desire for the Philippines is a prosperous society that includes everyone – a peaceful law-abiding citizenry and people of different beliefs who choose to get along with one another,” Duterte said in his remarks at Fort del Pilar.
“That is why I appreciate the PMA. You have the template of discipline and civility. I ask that you continue this tradition and thank you for inviting me to be part of you,” the President added.
The Chief Executive reiterated his pledge to solve corruption during his six-year term.
“I would hit hard against corruption so I must set the example because if I don’t, I cannot demand obedience,” he said.
“At least during my time, there will be a respite for the people and corruption will really be controlled or stopped. I can assure you of that,” the President added.
Duterte described as a “double honor” being adopted by the PMA Class of 1967 and formally by the PMA Alumni Association Inc. (PMAAAI).
“I am an adopted Dimasupil Class of 1967,” Duterte said. “That is already honor enough. But to be formally adopted by the Philippine Military Academy Alumni is a double honor in my case because of my long and harmonious relationship with PMA alumni, not about political consideration.”
To be an honorary member of the PMAAAI, the person should be nominated by at least three PMA batches and will have to undergo an intensive vetting process.
Duterte has been an adopted member of the PMA Class of 1967 since 1994 when he was mayor of Davao City.
“The work I do, I do in the service of the people and somehow, I also feel at home here at PMA because of its mission to train and develop graduates with character and skill,” he said.
“Being a soldier demands an inner strength, a choice to live by courage and principle. Because my own life has been molded by the principle of love of country, compassion for the poor and needy, and pride in being a Filipino,” the President added.