MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte said he will not punish police officers accepting gifts from the public if the move was done out of gratitude and generosity.
In a speech during the 118th Police Service Anniversary of the Philippine National Police on Aug. 9, Duterte lambasted the anti-graft law as he sees nothing wrong with police officers accepting rewards.
“Hindi ko kayo iipitin. Basta kung bigyan kayo, tanggapin ninyo,” Duterte said.
“If there’s generosity in them… Sabi ng anti-graft law, you cannot accept gifts. Kalokohan ‘yan.”
“Especially if you’re a police, if you’re able to solve a crime, and the family would like to be generous to you, or would nurture a feeling of gratitude for what you accomplished, then by all means, accept it,” he added.
Duterte’s latest pronouncement, however, could run counter with his previous statements where he urged the Filipinos to “make a scene” and report to authorities any public officials asking for bribes or grease money.
“Kayo rin kasi sinasabi ko na sa’yo, be assertive. At ‘pag kayo hiningan more than the required payment by the government, again I’m telling you mag-iskandalo kayo sa opisina,” Duterte before said.
“Kapag pinilit kayo sabihin niyo sabi ni Duterte that if you extort money from me, I will slap you. At sampalin talaga ninyo. Di na bale magka-away, I will defend you,” he added.
Since assuming the presidency in 2016, Duterte has been vocal with his fight against the still prevalent corruption in the government that he has fired several government officials involved in corrupt practices./PN