MANILA, July 17 (Mabuhay) — The Filipino people are allegedly getting exasperated over President Rodrigo Duterte’s obliviousness to their needs in the past four years and especially now that there is a pandemic, detained Senator Leila de Lima said Friday as the fifth State of the Nation Address (SONA) approaches.

“Ginoong Duterte: Kung bukambibig mong pagod ka na bilang Pangulo, kahit hindi ka naman nagtatrabaho, puwes, mas pagod na kami sa pamumuno mo!” De Lima, a staunch critic of the President, said in a statement.

It was read by her chief of staff Fhilip Sawali during a pre-SONA press conference conducted by around 30 militant groups.

The opposition senator said the judgment day for the Duterte administration must come soon as she encouraged the people to let their voices be heard.

“Kung patatagalin pa ang paniningil, ilang libo pang maralita ang papatayin? Ilan pang inosente, mamamahayag at tagapagtanggol ng karapatang pantao ang ipakukulong? Ilan pang media ang ipasasara? Ilan pang matinong pinuno ang patatalsikin para sa kanilang pansariling interes?” she said.

Former Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, who was ousted in 2018 over alleged integrity issues, also encouraged the people to stop enabling Duterte.

A United Nations expert previously said Sereno’s removal from post was linked to Duterte’s remarks against her that sent a chilling message to the country’s judges.

During the virtual forum, Sereno said the administration’s pivot to China, the impunity on thousands of violent deaths, and “disastrous” handling of COVID-19 pandemic were just among the sufferings of Filipinos.

“Come, let us all unite and return to the good. The President has abandoned science, reason, and God. Now, look at where it has all brought us— death, despair, the destruction of the economy as well as the violation of human dignity,” Sereno said.

“This government treats human beings as if they are not made in the image of God,” she added.

The former Chief Justice also urged the people to distinguish support for the government for the common good from “idolatry of a strongman who cannot save.”

She added that tolerating the promotion of evil is a “gross sin.” (MNS)

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