The Davao City council on Tuesday has declared opposition Senator Antonio Trillanes IV as “persona non-grata” following his remarks against the city.
“Mr. President, I move to declare Mr. Antonio Trillanes IV, Senator of the Republic of the Philippines, as a ‘Persona Non-Grata’ in the City of Davao,” said Davao City Vice Mayor Bernard Al-Ag during an awarding ceremony for the seal of good local governance.
The council unanimously approved the resolution filed by Vice Mayor Bernard Al-ag on Tuesday, February 13, during a regular session.
Trillanes has earlier claimed that the crime rate in the hometown of the President is high, and tagged Davao City as the “most dangerous city in the Philippines” during a forum with members of Filipino community in Chicago.
“Number one ang Davao City sa murder at number two sa rape sa buong Pilipinas. [The Davao City is number one when it comes to murder and number two in rape in the whole Philippines] So in fact, based on statistics, Davao City is actually the most dangerous city in the Philippines,” Trillanes said.
Al-ag called out Trillanes for “mocking the intelligence” of the citizens of Davao Cityn adding that his comment is an insult to them.
“Declaring that my city is the most dangerous city in the Philippines is not acceptable! This is an insult to the 1.6 million Dabawenyos who are working hard everyday to make our city safe,” the vice mayor said.
“Mr Trillanes, Dabawenyos are furious and angry with your words and with your action….We do not need you here in Davao City. You are unwelcome and unwanted in our city of Davao. You have not done anything good at all to our city!” he added.
The Vice Mayor, then, challenged the Filipino community who attended the forum to visit Davao City to witness that the statement of the Senator is not based on truth.
“Mr. Trillanes, you will not succeed in destroying our city. You will not succeed in destroying the Dabawenyos. You will not succeed in destroying our beloved President Rodrigo Duterte,” Al-ag said.
Trillanes had accused President Rodrigo Duterte and his family of having ill-gotten wealth in his bank accounts that are allegedly not stated in their Statement of Assets, Liabilities, and Net worth (SALN).
However, the President has denied the accusations of Trillanes.
Aside from Trillanes, Filipino-American businesswoman Loida Nicolas-Lewis was also declared as “persona non-grata.” Lewis was accused of plotting to destabilize the Duterte government.
Trillanes, in response to the city’s action, said the city council is hurt by the “truth” that were based on a December 2015 report of the Philippine National Police.
“The truth, definitely, hurts… The people of Davao either know it but tolerate it out of fear or they’ve actually believed the lie that was fed to them that Davao City is the safest city in the world,” he said in a statement on Tuesday.