Philippines under Rodrigo Duterte Part I
Era of Duterte (since 2016)
Never before in the history of the republic has the relationship between president and vice-president been so shattered as it was in the case of Aquino and Jejomar Binay just under a year before the presidential election on May 9, 2016. The controversy between the two turned out to be so harsh that Aquino did not mention his deputy during his last speech on the State of the Union and the deputy reacted unusually sharply by unceremoniously presenting his own view of the state of the nation, which was not a good one Let hair on Aquino. On the contrary: He accused him of “failure”, “insensitivity” and “procrastination”.
According to estatelearning, Binay had to bury his lofty ambitions to become the new president, as did the candidate and former interior minister, Manuel Roxas II, who was supported by President Aquino. The ex-mayor of Davao City, Rodrigo R. Duterte, presented himself as the shining winner of the election. After all, he won the election on May 9th by 6.2 million votes ahead of Roxas.
One thing has already been certain since Duterte, the 16th President of the Philippines, took office on June 30, 2016: He is by far the most colorful and controversial person who has ever moved into the Malacañang presidential palace in Manila. For his fan base, the 72-year-old “Rody” is the long-awaited messiah – moreover the first president to come from Mindanao – who speaks a clear and understandable (sometimes extreme gutter) language and has decided to be the bastions of the hated “Imperial Manila” grind. The fight against corruption, crime and the transformation of the republic from a presidential to a federal system are avowedly its main political concerns.
For his opponents and critics, however, Duterte is regarded as a “sociopath”, an “indecent loudmouth” and someone who not only reintroduces the death penalty, but also ” drug lords” and other criminals of the shady underworld “wants to clean up and make short work of them. National and international human rights organizations accuse the new president of at least tolerating death squads in” his “city, if not actively supporting them himself. On the other hand, Duterte immediately after his election victory announces that as a gesture of goodwill, the political prisoners will be released and talks will be resumed immediately with the left underground alliance in the form of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP). According to the latest polls by the two polling institutes Pulse Asia and Social Weather Stations, the president gets approval ratings still almost 80 percent – a dream result for some, a leaden trauma for others.
Since Duterte took office, a ghost has haunted the Philippines – the ghost of Dutertismo. It is dragging makeshift wooden coffins that have been nailed together – with at least over 8,000 corpses (as of end of June 2017). The number of victims- mostly poor suckers from slum quarters who barely kept themselves afloat as day laborers or tricycle drivers – growing daily. This ghost is named after the 72-year-old Rodrigo R. Duterte. What distinguishes him and his political style in particular is a bizarre meandering between (sometimes right, sometimes left) populist habit and dark reactionary rumbling with a tendency towards fascist features. This pendulum policy is staged according to a tough calculation or it takes place in impulsive staccato. With often bitter consequences, for which “Rody” or “Digong”, as the fans and cheerleaders affectionately call their president, sometimes excuse themselves lankily with “That wasn’t meant like that” or “That was just a joke”.
The bitter irony of fate: At the end of 2015, Duterte wanted to break the skulls of people who urged him to run for the highest office of the state and therefore to take part in the general elections on May 9, 2016. “Digong” had strictly rejected this because, as President, he could send tens of thousands, even over 100,000 people to the afterlife in his mission to ” cleanse the country of drugs, crime and corruption “. He would like to publicly announce in the summer of 2015, “feed the fish in Manila Bay” with their corpses, which are getting fatter and fatter.
“Digong” always appealed to political opponents and personal adversaries: “Get out of my way or I’ll kill you!” A year later, Duterte, as President, vowed to behave “prim and proper” from now on – “groomed and decent”. Instead of death threats, the English SOB (“son of a bitch”) comes from his lips more often. With which he not only disgraced Pope Francis, because his flying visit in January 2015 was accompanied by traffic chaos. He also referred this to the US ambassador in Manila and especially to his personified anti-ideal and his sharpest political parliamentary opponent, Senator Leila de Lima. Before the previous government under Benigno S. Aquino III. had served as Minister of Justice, the militant woman was chairman of the state human rights commission. And as its boss, de Lima was one of the few people who dared publicly criticize the mayor of Davao City at the time for his involvement in the city’s death squad (Davao Death Squad – DDS) in 2009. Davao’s mayor was then, before and until the end of June 2016, none other than Rodrigo R. Duterte.