Duterte says he's better than Diokno, Hilbay, La Viña: Ako ang pinaka-bright na abogado!

Duterte says he’s better than Diokno, Hilbay, La Viña: Ako ang pinaka-bright na abogado!

President Rodrigo Duterte may have just been an average law student, but he believes he’s the smartest abogado in the country.

In a speech last week in Isabela, Duterte boasted he’s better than former Solicitor General Florin Hilbay, human rights lawyer Chel Diokno and law professor Tony La Viña.

“Pareho ito si Chel, pati si Florin. Hindi malaman kung lalaki o babae. Anak ka ng pato. Former solicitor general. Alam mo, totoo. Alam mo kung sinong pinaka bright? Ako,” he said.

Duterte said proof of his brilliance was his use of a supposed loophole in the Philippines’ ratification of the Rome Statute to escape the International Criminal Court’s jurisdiction.

The Rome Statute was the treaty that created the ICC.

“Walang isang abugado dito sa Pilipinas pati ‘yan sila Lavina, mga constitutionalist, maniwala kayo niyan. P***** i** mga bugok talaga ‘yan,” Duterte said.

The President explained that the ICC cannot exercise its jurisdiction over him because the Rome Statute wasn’t published in the Official Gazette, which was a requirement for laws to take effect.

“Sabi ng Supreme Court publication of a law especially a criminal statute must be published. If you do not publish it, there is no law at all. It is as if there is nothing in the books of the government that will bind me to a criminal case,” he said.

Duterte ordered the Philippines to withdraw from the ICC last year after the Office of the Prosecutor announced it is launching a preliminary examination in relation to the war on drugs.

The country’s exit from the tribunal became effective on March 17.

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