What’s cooking?


The supposed destabilization plot against President Rodrigo Duterte had been around since last year — rumors that groups are planning to oust the President since gaining the presidency in 2016.

The public back then had surmised on its own that these plots are nothing more than rumors — a ploy to unseat the President who has maintained excellent ratings in trust and satisfaction surveys from people almost all walks of life.

Even Duterte earlier had dismissed those rumors as merely “political,” saying that it’s more of a publicity to which he can do nothing about since it’s an exercise of the freedom of speech that is guaranteed by the Constitution.

But these rumors, no matter how ridiculous they may seem, are slowly becoming a reality — and the President is singing a different tune these days.

Upon his arrival on Saturday at the Davao International Airport from his trips to Israel and Jordan, Duterte warned of a unified effort from three groups that have allegedly connived to oust him by October.

“There are three — the yellow… Liberal (Party), Trillanes and communists,” he said in his arrival speech.

Even presidential spokesman Harry Roque admitted that the political enemies of the President are “cooking up a massive destabilization plot” in time for the 46th anniversary of the martial law under the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos.

“What basis does President Duterte have to unleash such allegations?

“From what I gathered, some groups are really cooking up a massive destabilization plot in time for the martial law anniversary this September. That’s why the President said it would be in high gear come October,” Roque said in an interview.

Of course, the groups that were pinpointed by the President swiftly — and fiercely — defended themselves from the allegations, saying Duterte is merely throwing baseless accusations because of paranoia.

The Liberal Party (LP) members, for example, claimed they were like “whipping boys” who are always used as an excuse when things in the government go awry. They even went to say that their members can be counted by their two hands and stressed that they are not capable of such plots.

“The Liberal Party is always made a whipping boy — it is always used as an excuse. But don’t they know that almost no one was left in the party? Everyone moved to them. That’s why when they talk about the Liberal Party, whom are they referring to? Because now, you can count Liberal Party members on your fingers,” said Vice President Leni Robredo who is also one of LP’s leaders.

LP president Sen. Francis Pangilinan, on the other hand, fired back at Duterte, telling him the government is “destabilizing itself” due to incompetence and corruption.

“The opposition does not have to do anything. On its own, either by its incompetence or corruption, the government is doing a good job of destabilizing itself,” Pangilinan said.

“The accusation of destabilization is downright false. It is ridiculous. Dissent is not destabilization. Every time scandals and controversies hound this administration, whether they be corruption issues or issues of incompetent governance, it blames the opposition,” he added.

“Some groups are really cooking up a massive destabilization plot in time for the martial law anniversary this September.

Now, if we look into the big picture, we can ask one valid and timely question: What basis does President Duterte have to unleash such allegations?
For one, it’s a matter of national security. What we see here right now is President Duterte being transparent on what is happening in the country. The government cannot ignore such alarming rumors — no matter how big, small, ridiculous or outrageous they may sound — that may affect the security of the President.

And if naysayers would insist that the President should focus his sights on the country’s problems like the rising prices of commodities and lack of jobs, we believe that the President is doing just that.

The Duterte administration had already launched its ambitious but practical project in the Build, Build, Build program which is sure to generate the jobs that our unemployed countrymen badly need.

The government had also implemented the zero income tax to employees who are earning approximately P25,000 and below, ensuring that they will have a bigger take-home pay.

Although many believe such plot would not succeed given Duterte’s mandate from the people, we cannot discount the possibility of it becoming true which could be really dangerous.

If these groups are really cooking up something, then what they should cook is a solution to help the government achieve its goal of giving Filipinos a better life and discontinue being attention-seekers that sow discord in the administration. Cook something up that can unite everyone towards peace and prosperity — that should be the ultimate goal.