PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte has accused one of his arch-critics, Sen. Antonio Trillanes 4th, of accepting money from big businesses, a charge that the opposition lawmaker immediately branded as a “lie coming from a pathological liar.”
Speaking before the Filipino community in Thailand on Wednesday night, Duterte claimed Trillanes collected “retainers” from big businessmen who were too afraid to turn the senator away.
“Nagkokolekta iyan sa mga malalaking negosyante… Iyan ang abogado na hindi abogado. Abogado may retainer iyan. Totoo iyan. Ang mga malalaking negosyo natatakot sa kanya [He collects from big businesses. He is a lawyer who is not a lawyer. Lawyers have retainers, that’s true. Big businesses are afraid of him],” the President said.
He then mocked Trillanes’ participation in the 2003 Oakwood Mutiny and the 2007 Manila Peninsula Siege, calling the senator and his companions cowards for surrendering immediately to the police.
“Anong ginawa ng p**** i** niya? Di ba nagrebelde? Diyan sa Makati nagwara-wara ng mga baril. Nagmartsa doon. Inagaw yung Peninsula na hotel. Nag-barricade doon. Pagdating ng pulis ang mga duwag na u*** nag-surrender kaagad. Tapos naging senador akala mo nagmamakalinis ang g*** [What did that son of a b**** do? Didn’t he rebel? He marched and seized the Peninsula hotel and barricaded there. When the police arrived, he and his coward companions surrendered. Now that he is senator, he is making it appear that he is clean],” Duterte said.
“Sabi ko napakaduwag niyang p***** i** matakot kayo. Pagdating ng pulis surrender kaagad. Akala ko ba makipagpatayan ka [I said, why be afraid of him, he was a coward. He surrendered when the police arrived. I thought you were willing to die]?” the President added.
In a statement, Trillanes dared Duterte to bring him to court. Otherwise, the President should answer allegations that he hid P2 billion in secret bank accounts.
“If that (accepting money from big businesses) is true, he should come out with the details and charge me. I will face that. In my case, I came out with specific details, documents, witnesses, and I charged him (Duterte) to support my allegations against him. But he’s hiding until now,” Trillanes said in Filipino.
So stop fooling us, open your bank accounts,” he added.
Trillanes had accused Duterte of amassing ill-gotten wealth amounting to P2 billion as early as the campaign period.
This was denied by presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella, who called the lawmaker last month “overly imaginative and very dramatic.”