Duterte calls Rappler writers paid hacks: May pambili ng kotse, pambayad kay Belo!
President Rodrigo Duterte has attacked the website Rappler once again, accusing the writers employed by Chief Executive Officer Maria Ressa of being paid hacks.
In a speech in Batangas City on April 17, Duterte said Rappler’s journalists would be unable to afford the luxuries they enjoy if their salaries came from writing alone.
“‘Yang mga Rappler na ‘yan, hindi nila… Ang pera na… Bayad ‘yan lahat. Kasi itong mga p***** i**** ‘to, kung ang negosyo lang nila magsulat-sulat lang, mga pulubi kayo sa totoo lang,” he said during PDP-Laban’s campaign sortie.
“Hindi kayo makabili ng mga kotse, mga ganun. P*** mapupunta pa kayo doon sa mga — kay Belo nagpaganda. Saan niyo kunan ng pera? Milyonaryo kayo?” Duterte added.
The President sarcastically remarked that Rappler journalists are now able to afford deodorants when they used to stink before.
Duterte was incensed by a recent report published by the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ), which noted a spike in his and his family’s wealth over a 1-year period.
The PCIJ report, which was reposted by Rappler, claimed there were also inconsistencies in the financial interests declared by Duterte and his relatives in government in their Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN).
In his defense, Duterte said he earned well as a practicing abogado and as a trader of motorcycles. A portion of his wealth was also inherited.