Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Military backs Duterte, warns destabilizers who want to undermine the stability and security of the country

Brig Gen. Restituto Padilla (Presidential photo file) / Right side is a screen shot of the ouster letter from Padem group 

Manila, Philippines- On Tuesday, Malacanang and the Armed Forces of the Philippines downplayed the efforts made a group named “Patriotic and Democratic Movement (Padem) to oust President Rodrigo Duterte as it was “politically motivated”.

The said group claimed to represent the military and police units.

In a press conference, Palace Spokesperson Ernesto Abella dismissed the alegations against the president.

“We based our statement on the AFP’s assessment and it says it is a politically motivated group and that we should be wary of their statements,” the Spokesperson told the reporters.

Padem called for the president’s ouster, “for betraying public trust” , for violating the “national sovereignty and democratic rights of the people”.

The group accused Duterte of some other issues such as; using the AFP and Philippine National Police (PNP) as his private armies, for playing favorites, inexperienced anti-terrorist operations in Marawi City. According also to the group, the president allowed Chinese vessels to occupy some parts of the West Philippine Sea, condoned the top drug lords including the presidential son Paulo Duterte, and for inciting police officers to engage in Extra Judicial Killings (EJK) among poor illegal drug users and traders.

Meanwhile, Brigadier General Restituto Padilla Jr., the spokesperson of AFP, said the military was in full support to the president, as its Commander-in-Chief, and reiterated that its “a political stance”.
In a statement, Padilla said:

“The entire AFP along with all the men and women of the uniformed services and all our civilian personnel stand by the constitutionally mandated government and unequivocally supports the Commander-in-Chief,”

“The accusations and issues cited by the group are unfounded and uncalled for. Such issues are clearly politically motivated and a matter that the AFP does not and will not subscribe to,” he added.

Padilla even reiterated that AFP would not hesitate “acting against forces who shall undermine the stability and security of our country and those who wish to destabilize our nation through unconstitutional means.”