Palace explains Duterte’s warning of radical changes


President Duterte’s warning of “radical changes” in the fight against criminality stemmed from the recent spate of criminality in the country, including the killing of a pregnant prosecutor early this week, according to Malacañang.

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said the President warned criminals that there would be changes in peace and order, citing “too many crimes” that happened in the past few days.

Roque, in a press briefing yesterday, said that while he, himself, is also unsure of what the changes will be, the public can expect that the government will intensify its campaign against criminality and illegal drugs.

“So ‘yung kanyang sinabi po na abangan ang mga reporma, ‘yan po ay dahil gusto pa niyang paigtingin ang giyera laban sa kriminalidad at ipinagbabawal na droga,” he said.

“Siguro po, kaya nga na-frustrate ang Presidente, dalawang prosecutor po ang napatay, isa po buntis pa. At may mga bali-balita po ng increase ng mga holdapan sa Metro Manila,” he added.

According to the Palace official, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Oscar Alba-yalde is also waiting for orders from the President on how to implement the “radical changes.”

“I have been in contact with General Albayalde of the PNP this morning and ‘yun nga po, we are gearing up, we are doing better in the fight against criminality,” Roque said.

In his Wednesday predawn speech, Duterte warned criminals and erring officials to behave as he promised that radical changes will take effect in the next few days to address certain issues in public order and security.

“There will be changes in the coming days including public order and security. There are simply too many crimes and too many – claiming to be this and that,” Duterte said upon his arrival from his three-day visit in Seoul, South Korea.

On Monday, 33-year-old pregnant Ombudsman Prosecutor Madonna Joy Tanyag was stabbed to death as she was walking on the sidewalk in Barangay Varsa, Quezon City.

Roque said President Duterte recognizes that the fight against criminality and illegal drugs can still be improved.

“The President reiterated that while we have been combating crime and prohibited drugs since day one of his administration, apparently we can do more,” he said.