MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday threatened to order the arrest of people, especially those who belong to Left-leaning groups, who will attempt to sow disorder amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic in the country.
Duterte made the stern warning in a televised address to the nation aired on state-run PTV-4 on late Wednesday night.
His pronouncement came after learning that there are some people who are trying to “mess up” with the government amid the implementation of enhanced community quarantine in the entire Luzon.
“I am addressing the Left na ‘yung pambabastos ninyo (that your rudeness) ‘yung slamming about the distribution. Remember, kayong mga (to the) Left, you are not the government. Naiintindihan ninyo iyan? Hindi kayo nasa gobyerno (Do you understand? You are not part of the government). And you cannot be a part of what we are planning to do for the nation,” Duterte said.
“I will not hesitate to order the police to arrest and detain you,” he added.
Earlier Wednesday, around 21 protesters demanding food and other assistance were arrested in Quezon City for protesting sans government permit.
In an interview with CNN Philippines, Quezon City Task Force Action Officer Rannie Ludovica said the Leftist group Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap (Kadamay) instigated the nabbed individuals to stage the rally.
Kadamay was the militant urban group that also forcibly occupied the idle housing units in Pandi town and San Jose del Monte City in Bulacan province in 2017.
Duterte had made it clear that he would not tolerate Kadamay’s actions that were meant to put the government in an embarrassing position.
“So we are trying to manage na lahat magkaroon (everyone gets) equally. Equally is equally, pera pati pagkain (money and food). Ano ‘yung parte ko, parte mo ‘yan. Pero maghintay kayo. Huwag ninyong gamitin ang pwersa (My part is your part, too. But wait and do not use force),” he said.
In his latest remarks, Duterte said he would show no mercy to people, including members of Kadamay, whose intention was to hamper the government’s efforts to address Covid-19.
“Ngayon, kapag kayo ang nadetain, bahala kayo sa pagkain ninyo. Ibigay ko na lang ‘yun sa mga matitino pati sa mga nangangailangan. Huwag niyong subukan ang gobyerno kasi itong gobyerno na ito, hindi inutil (Now, when you get arrested, we will not give you food. We will instead give that to sensible and needy people. Do not challenge the government because the government is not inutile),” he said. (PNA)