Duterte dares 'Reds, yellows': Merge into one command

Ruth Abbey Gita

PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday challenged the "yellow" and "red" parties, apparently referring to the opposition Liberal Party and the communist group, to confederate and form "one command" that would take a stand against him and his administration.

Duterte made the call at the relaunch of the Press Working Room held in Malacañang's New Executive Building in San Miguel, Manila.

The President said he would be glad if the two parties would form a single group since they both share the same "ideology."

He added that it would be easier for him to "focus on all of [them]" if they band together.

"To yellows and reds, I would be happy really if they will start to merge into one command. These communists and Liberal [members] and others who want to oust me, just create a single group," Duterte said.

"I think you share ideological or whatever. [Form a group] so it would not be problematic for me. We can focus on all of you," he added.

Duterte's remark came after he alluded in early October that the Liberal Party and the communist insurgents were now allied to destabilize him and eventually remove him from office.

The President has repeatedly claimed that members of the Liberal Party had an ulterior motive to unseat him.

Duterte, on the other hand, has scrapped the peace negotiations with the communist group following the string of attacks launched by the New People’s Army, its armed wing, against the government troops.

Despite the purported destabilization plots against him, the Chief Executive maintained that he would remain focused on serving the country.

"This is no threat. I said it is my mandated duty to keep this country safe and sound. And the only way I can do it is I have to build a strong army and police," he said. (SunStar Philippine)