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Duterte threatens to fire Robredo if she reveals state secrets

GMA News Online logo GMA News Online 11/16/2019
Rodrigo Duterte, Leni Robredo looking at the camera: Rodrigo Duterte and Leni Robredo composite Rodrigo Duterte and Leni Robredo composite

President Rodrigo Duterte has threatened to fire Vice President Leni Robredo as co-chair of the Inter-agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) if she reveals classified matters of the government that will endanger the security of the state.

Duterte, in an exclusive interview with GMA News' Marisol Abdurahman on Balitanghali Weekend, made the pronouncement when asked regarding Robredo's meeting with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), community-based advocacy groups and U.S. Embassy officials to discuss the drug problem in the country.

"There's a limit to that. I know that she's a lawyer and she has other advisers... There are certain matters that should be kept with the government, that classified matters cannot be shared. Once [she does] that, she's out, I would fire her. Because you jeopardized the security of the state," Duterte said.

Also in the interview, Duterte reiterated he is suffering from illnesses due to old age.

"Lahat ng sakit, nandito na sa 'kin kasi matanda na ako... Kung sabihin mo, 'Okay ka ba presidente? Are you in the best of health?' Of course not. I am old, life has begun to take its toll on my health. At kung sabihin mong may sakit ako, meron. You name it, I have it. Para wala na lang debate."

A few days after he was not seen in public, Duterte went to Eastern Samar on Friday and personally expressed his condolences to the orphaned families of the soldiers killed in a clash with NPA rebels.

Duterte, who is also the Armed Forces of the Philippines' Commander-in-Chief, gave a salute and farewell to the soldiers who died when improvised explosive devices blew up on them.

The President provided financial assistance to the relatives.

Duterte conferred the Order of Lapu-Lapu, Rank of Kampilan, on 16 wounded soldiers confined at the Camp Lukban Station Hospital.

The President was energetic on Friday night in his meeting with the soldiers, who was game when he talked and jested with them.

Duterte was seen again by the public after his three-day stay in Davao City.

Duterte then flew to Tacloban to visit other injured soldiers afterwards. — Jamil Santos/MDM, GMA News

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