CALLING her an ‘immoral woman,’ President Rodrigo Duterte yesterday dropped an ‘atomic bomb’ and hit a senator for having an affair with her driver who allegedly collected money for her recent election campaign.
Speaking during the 115th Police Service Anniversary at Camp Crame, the President lambasted an unnamed senator for heavily criticizing his government’s massive anti-drug crackdown which, according to Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald “Bato” M. dela Rosa has already resulted in the killing of 572 armed drug traffickers in gunbattles with the police since last July 1.
There have been wild rumors before that an Aquino government official is having a romantic liaison with her driver, all charges which were said to be part of ‘black propaganda’ against the official. The driver was once involved in a case of indiscriminate firing in a Luzon province but got away from trouble with the law allegedly due to the intercession of the official.
President Duterte did not name the senator but said “Here’s a senator complaining. One day I will tell you that her driver himself, who was a lover, was the one collecting money for her during the campaign. “An immoral woman, insofar as the driver’s wife is concerned, it’s adultery. Here’s a woman who funded a house of a lover and yet we don’t say any complaint about it,” added the President.
In a speech broadcast live on radio and television and heard personally by a huge crowd at the PNP Multi-Purpose Center including former President Fidel V. Ramos and members of the diplomatic corps, President Duterte clarified he was unsure whether the driver was giving the money he was collecting from unscrupulous individuals to the senator.
“But in fairness, I would never say clearly that the driver gave the money to her but by the looks of it, she has it,” he said.
According to the tough-talking leader, the senator has no right to complain about the recent killings of drug suspects in the country when she herself has “a very sordid personal and official life.”
He dropped the bombshell a week after saying he was going to “destroy” a female official who keeps on overly criticizing his government.
“You know I was the whipping boy of the NGOs (non-government organizations) and the human rights stalwarts. But you know I have a special ano kay ano, she is a government official. One day soon, I’ll have to let her go in public and I will have to destroy her in public,” he said last week.
He, however, did not name the official, saying, “That’s the riddle there. “Just wait. They might have thought that I never listened to them. So, while all the time they were also listening to what I’ve done. I’ve also been busy with the help of another country listening to them,” he said.
It is an open secret that Mr. Duterte and the PNP leadership have been at odds with Sen. Leila M. de Lima, a former justice secretary of his predecessor. The senator has scheduled a Senate inquiry on the drug-related killings in the country next week.