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Duterte to AFP, PNP: No coup please

DUTERTE

DUTERTE

President Duterte has appealed to the Armed Forces of the Philippines and Philippine National Police not to stage a coup during his term.

In his speech during the 72nd anniversary of the Philippine Air Force in Villamor Air Base in Pasay City Tuesday, Duterte said staging a coup would not be necessary since he was willing to step down if he was asked to.

“I know that the Armed Forces and the police will have to decide one day somehow. Do not do it please during my term,” Duterte said.

Stressing he wanted to avoid violence, Duterte said soldiers and policemen who no longer find him deserving to lead the country could simply talk to him over a cup of coffee.

“I told you before all you have to do kung ayaw ninyo ako, do not bring your weapons and mechanized armors there,” Duterte said. “Just call me and we’ll have coffee and I am ready to say, ‘It’s yours for the taking,’” he added.

This is not the first time Duterte mentioned coups in his speeches.

Last February, Duterte scolded military and police officers for joining coup attempts to return the power of the government to political rivals. In September 2018, Duterte described coup attempts as a “waste of time” since he was willing to step down if they were discontented with his leadership.

The AFP and the PNP reassured Duterte yesterday that they have no plans to unseat him.

The AFP said they have “learned their lessons from the past.”

“The Armed Forces of the Philippines led by its chief, Gen. Benjamin Madrigal Jr., is comprised of professional and matured servicemen and women who are patriots and loyal to the Constitution and the duly constituted authorities. We have learned our lessons from the past and we shall live with it,” said Brig. Gen. Edgard Arevalo, AFP spokesperson.

Arevalo said the commander-in-chief’s statement was a random remark. “That was a random remark on the part of the President and commander-in-chief, in so far as the AFP is concerned,” he said.

Police Gen. Oscar Albayalde, PNP chief, also assured Duterte that there will be no coup attempt on their part.

Albayalde doubts if there would be any group of soldiers that would dare to forcibly topple the Chief Executive.

“There is no plan in the AFP and the PNP. I can assure you that,” said Albayalde. (PNA, Argyll Geducos, Martin Sadongdong, and Aaron Recuenco)

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