Duterte warns Senate: I will ‘extract’ govt officials detained for corruption probe

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 21) — President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday warned of “trouble in government” if the Senate would detain officials due to the probe into the government’s purchase of alleged overpriced medical supplies for pandemic response.

During Duterte’s public address aired Monday night, the President again defended government officials involved in the purchase of alleged overpriced medical supplies. Duterte also attacked Senator Richard Gordon, chair of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee investigating the procurement.

Huwag kayong pumayag na sigaw-sigawan kayo ni Dick Gordon (Do not let Dick Gordon shout at you.) Just stand up and go out,” Duterte told government officials.

"I said if the [Senate's] sergeant-at-arms, i-detain ka (detains you) then once I hear about it, I will go to the Senate and get you and extract you. Iyan talaga ang mangyari (This will really happen), then Senator Gordon we will be having trouble in government... We will be having a crisis... at the end of the day it is the country who will suffer," the President added.

Last week, Duterte ordered Cabinet members to seek his permission first before attending the Senate inquiry, saying the hearings “hamper their implementation of COVID-19 pandemic programs.”

“The inquiry is being done at the expense of dragging government officials and compromising the government’s efforts against COVID-19,” he added.

He also questioned the intention of senators, asking if the Senate inquiry is being done in aid of legislation or for political purposes.

Gordon has yet to respond to Duterte’s latest rant.