The many times Duterte threatened to quit as president

June 11, 2018 - 10:20 AM
(Photo by PPD/Ace Morandante; Arwork by Uela Badayos)

Following the controversies over his trip to South Korea, President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to resign if “enough” women would petition for it, a bold statement he seemed to have a habit of making in response to critics.

He further defended himself, saying kissing women had been his “style.”

“During the campaign in my mayorship days, I kiss every woman there, lips to lips… Not only smack. Other women really wanted romance,” the president explained.

Even before he held the highest position in the land, Duterte had made apparent promises to leave office as his supposed way to strengthen his stance on many reasons.

If campaign promise is not met

Duterte, then mayor of Davao city, vowed to end widespread criminality and corruption in the country within a short span of three to six months during the presidential campaign in 2016.

In case he failed, vice presidential candidate Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., his campaign partner, will take over to lead the government instead.

As it turned out, the president-elect asked to extend the six-month deadline indefinitely.

On Nov. 24, 2017, Duterte vowed anew to step down if he could no longer curb illegal narcotics and corruption.

If the Constitution becomes federal

Being that amending the Constitution to accommodate a federal system of government may entail a new leader, Duterte said he would tender his resignation if the transition happened in 2020, two years before the end of his term.

Shifting to a federal government was one of his key platforms as a candidate, which supporters deem would help solve underdevelopment and rebel strife in Mindanao.

If his children were found to be corrupt officials

Since last year, Duterte had been pronouncing his resignation if either him or his children, current Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte and former Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte, were found to commit corruption.

In December 2017, his son resigned from his position amid Senator Antonio Trillanes IV’s accusations tagging him him to the smuggling controversy of the Bureau of Customs.

If allegations of hidden bank accounts were proven

Duterte repeatedly pledged to resign last year if Trillanes and his critics proved allegations over his undeclared bank accounts worth more than P2 billion when he was still mayor of Davao City.

He also tagged his critics, former Chief Justice Maria Lourdes and Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, whom he accused of “selective justice,” to go down with him if his alleged ill-gotten wealth was proven.

The president denied all corruption allegations against him, and claimed that he inherited all his personal assets.

While Duterte admitted to co-own a bank account with daughter Sara, he refused calls to sign a waiver that would allow scrutiny of his wealth.

If he lost the trust of the Filipino people

Following his decree of September 21 as the National Day of Protest last year, Duterte said he would not hesitate to leave his post if he lost the confidence of about 16 million of his supporters, but it has to be approved by the Congress and the military.

It was the 45th anniversary of late dictator Ferdinand Marcos’ declaration of martial law that time, and thousands joined in protests throughout the country to seek redress from government.

If increased pay of soldiers was not approved

In December 2017, Duterte warned Congress that it should approve the doubling of salaries of the military or he would step down from office as a “matter of principle.”

This was in the wake of the two chambers determining which to prioritize first—the increase of pay of uniformed personnel or the first package of the tax reform bill.

If BBL did not pass

In April, Duterte made a pledge to quit anew if the proposed Bangsamore Basic Law as a way to address the long-standing grievances of Moros in Mindanao would not be passed.

He tagged the passage of BBL as “urgent” last month, urging Congress to speed up the passing of the legislation on second and third readings.

If UN special rapporteur proved ouster plots against Sereno

The latest of his warnings to quit came this month, this time in response to the supposed “meddling” of a representative from the United Nations into the historic Sereno ouster.

The chief executive said he will step down as president if Diego García-Sayán, the UN special rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, can confirm that Duterte had a hand in the moves to unseat Sereno through a little known judicial mechanism, the quo warranto.

The Supreme Court ruling last month invalidated her appointment as the head of the third co-equal branch. The petition was filed by the government’s official lawyer Jose Calida.

Amid the recent impeachment of the country’s top magistrate, Sayán raised concerns over what he described as “worrisome deterioration” of the country’s rule of law.