President Rodrigo Duterte said Wednesday he would step down from his post if the federal system of government would be fully established by year 2020.
“I assure you, if by 2020, they could have perfected the structure and we can move ahead, and if fine-tuned, although I am until 2022 (and) if it calls for an election of a president, I will step down immediately. Iyan ang pangako ko sa inyo (That is my promise.),” the Chief Executive said shortly after leading the destruction of 14 smuggled vehicles at the Port Irene here.
Bucking the opposition’s claim that he is becoming a dictator and that he is taking advantage of Charter Change, Duterte said he is pursuing a federal set-up because it was then promised by former President Corazon Aquino to Moro National Liberation Front chief Nur Misuari, “and not my promise.”
“There can never be a division in the country as long as I am the president so I would work double time,” the President said. “The Constitution will be honored. If I am overstaying, shoot me dead.”
Duterte added that the peace talks with the communists were snagged after the New People’s Army pushed for a coalition government.
“They asked was a coalition government (but) sovereignty is with the people. That is what they want. I cannot give you (NPAs) that I do not own. It (sovereignty) belongs to the people,” he said adding that such tie-up is unconstitutional. (PNA)
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