Four years into his presidency, Duterte remains a traitor to Filipinos and subservient to Chinese imperialist interests
Duterte fails to uphold the victory that the Philippines has won four years ago over China’s nine-dash line claims as ruled by the Permanent Court of Arbitration, and to add salt to the wound, he has proven time and again that he is more than willing to grant Beijing’s wishes.
His so-called independent foreign policy is not so independent but a subservient one. He has entered into questionable economic loans with high interests and other shady agreements that will unequally benefit China more than the Philippines. He has allowed the proliferation of Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGO) operations while seemingly lenient with tax supposed to be collected from them. The sinking of the Gem-Ver on June 2019, and the recent sinking of the fishing vessel Liberty 4 where the 14 passengers on board to this day are nowhere to be found, have only prompted lip service protests from the administration, if any.
Additionally, his failure to decisively close the borders with China earlier this year had allowed mainland Chinese nationals to continuously pour into the country despite the threat that the virus clearly posed – Duterte chose to “preserve” diplomatic and economic relations with China over the safety and health of his countrymen. That decision along with the government’s dismal handling of the pandemic has led us to the ever-worsening crisis that currently grips our nation.
We challenge Duterte to uphold his promise of an independent foreign policy – one that serves Filipinos and not the interests of foreign imperialists. If he remains unwilling to do this, rest assured that the youth along with the rest of the nation will be the one to assert our sovereignty and rights and wrest our country back from imperialist control.