President Rodrigo Duterte asked his friend, Pastor Apollo Quiboloy, founder of Kingdom of Jesus Christ, to redeem his soul from the devil.
In an exclusive interview with Quiboloy that aired on Tuesday, Duterte admitted that he “sometimes” does “evil things” to stoop down to the level of criminals, especially those involved in the drug trade.
Asked how his campaigns against drugs and corruption have been going five years into his term, the president answered by saying he is willing to “mortgage” his soul to fight criminals. He then asked Quiboloy to “…redeem the mortgage. Bayaran mo na lang. (Just pay for it).”
Duterte said he is prepared to do whatever criminals are capable of to ensure that they are held accountable. “Marunong rin ako bumaba sa impyerno (I also can go down to hell) to really meet you where you want it to be,” he added. The president, however, claimed that he draws the line at killing minors. “But Pastor, for the life of me, I never, never, allowed the killing of young people,” he said.
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Quiboloy praised Duterte, noting that people are amazed at the lengths the president will go to for his constituents. “Alam niyo, ‘yon ang bilib ng tao sa inyo kasi ‘yong trabaho ninyo ginagawa ninyo (You know, people are amazed at you for the work you’re doing) to the extent that you lay down your own life, for us,” Quiboloy claimed.
Despite Duterte’s high popularity ratings, local and international human rights groups remain critical of his anti-drug campaign. Under his term, the country witnessed the extrajudicial killing of thousands of drug suspects. While Duterte claims to spare minors, innocent children such as Kian de los Santos, 17 and Danica Garcia, 3, have already lost their lives to his bloody drug war.
Ana Catalina Paje is a development journalist passionate about grassroots communication geared towards genuine social change. The views expressed are her own.