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Duterte berates erring lawmen

By Genalyn D. Kabiling

Rogue policemen got a second serving of President Duterte’s threats after being forced to stand and wait at the Malacañang grounds for hours last Tuesday.

Emerging from a joint military and police command conference in Malacañang, the President spoke anew to the 102 erring cops and warned they would be killed if they continued to violate the law.

“Pag magkita tayo dito sa, sorry, sorry talaga. ‘Pag magtagpo tayo sa isang kanto sa buhay, yayariin ko talaga kayo, sigurado. Hindi ako magtitiis,” Duterte said in his brief remarks at past 10 p.m. before telling them to leave Malacañang. “I hope that you will not commit a mistake. Maawa ka sa pamilya ninyo. Madidisgrasya ka talaga,” he added.

Duterte urged the policemen to avoid looking for trouble and be contented with their higher salary. “Walang kaproblema kung marunong ka lang mag-timpla sa buhay. Doblado na nga ang sweldo ninyo, lahat na. Maghintay ka na lang. Huwag kang maghanap ng mali kasi lalabas nang lalabas ang totoo,” he said.

The President spoke in a calm voice during his second speech before erring cops from Metro Manila and nearby provinces, unlike his angry outburst four hours earlier.

Duterte earlier unleashed a profanity-filled rebuke of the cops facing criminal and administrative complaints, saying the country would be safer if they were in jail or dead. “Wala kayong silbi para sa akin. Salot kayo sa lipunan,” Duterte told the policemen.

After berating them in public, Duterte directed the policemen to stand and wait outside the Palace while he completes his meeting with top security officials.

Some policemen have been accused of kidnapping, rape, robbery and extortion, and involvement in the illegal drug trade. Others were facing administrative cases such as absence without leave, neglect of duty, and non-appearance in court duties.