Duterte rants against Drilon ‘unpresidential,’ another senator says

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PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte’s rants against opposition Senator Franklin M. Drilon at his annual address to Congress were “unpresidential,” according to another senator.

People, especially lawmakers should not be castigated for expressing an opinion, Senator Richard J. Gordon said at an online news briefing on Tuesday.

The President called out Mr. Drilon in his penultimate State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday after the opposition lawmaker spoke up about the shutdown of ABS-CBN Corp., a media network critical of the government.

“I think it was unpresidential,” Mr. Gordon said. “He shouldn’t air his anger toward a person especially against a senator.”

“A person who shares the position of a lot of people over the concern for freedom of expression should not be singled out,” he added.


Mr. Drilon earlier said Mr. Duterte, who claimed to have dismantled the oligarchy, could not have done so without banning political dynasties.

An irked Mr. Duterte called the lawmaker a hypocrite for hitting political dynasties while defending the rich such as the Lopez family, which owns ABS-CBN.

“When the President mentions something like this in his SONA, some might think he is in a sauna, not at the SONA,” Mr. Gordon said in mixed English and Filipino, adding that Mr. Duterte should have stuck to his prepared speech. — CAT