President Rodrigo Duterte said on Wednesday he will step down from office if any of his children were involved in corruption after his eldest son Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte was hauled into a smuggling scandal troubling the Bureau of Customs (BOC).
“Corruption was really one I do not like. Pati ‘yung anak ko ngayon, sinasali diyan sa Customs (Even my son was dragged in issues involving customs). I told you before and I’m telling you now again, if any of my children is involved in corruption, I will immediately resign… you have my word,” Duterte said during a business forum in Mandaluyong City.
Duterte also warned government officials who will entertain corruption practices in the intervention of his children, saying they will be fired and prosecuted in court even if they include his own relatives.
“I really do not tolerate corruption. Any official who entertains (corrupt practices) with the intervention of any of my sons and daughter, that is enough for me. I will fire you and I will press charges against you and my relative, wherever he is, and you’’ have the luxury of seeing me go down. Hindi ko na kailangan ang trabahong ito sa totoo lang (I really don’t need this job),” the president added.
Earlier, customs Broker Mark Taguba revealed in a House investigation that the vice mayor’s name was being dropped by people involved in bribery at the Customs.
Taguba said a certain “Tita Nanie” to whom he was giving P10, 000 bribe per container had said to him that the money would go to a “Davao group” headed by the vice mayor.
He admitted it was possible that Paolo’s name was used to allow the entry of smuggled drugs. Also, Taguba said it is only a rumor and he never talked to the vice mayor.
The younger Duterte has denied the allegation, citing the broker’s statement that it was only rumors.