Arroyo cites difficult ties with Duterte

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FORMER President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on Tuesday said she regretted her difficult relationship with President Rodrigo R. Duterte.

“My only regret with our relationship is that you have found me very difficult to deal with,” Ms. Arroyo, who is stepping out as House speaker on July 22, said in a speech during a farewell dinner in her honor.

“It was never my intention to be difficult with you,” she added.

Ms. Arroyo thanked the president for helping her get acquitted of plunder charges at the start of his term as president.

The outgoing House speaker said Mr. Duterte provided the atmosphere in which the Supreme court had the freedom to order her acquittal.

The president also recalled the days when Ms. Arroyo was the president he had to report to when he was still mayor of Davao City in the nation’s south.

Ms. Arroyo was acquitted in 2016 of charges that she misused P366 million of intelligence funds under the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office. — Vince Angelo C. Ferreras