Senator Leila M. de Lima has alerted the public about the possibility of a military takeover should President Duterte push through with his threat to declare a revolutionary government purportedly to quell destabilization plans by some quarters.
De Lima, a staunch defender of democracy and freedom, warned that Duterte can be forcibly removed from his office if he insists on declaring a revolutionary government to crush communists and those whom he perceived to be "enemies of the state."
"Those asking for a so-called RevGov or revolutionary government under Duterte should be careful what they wish for," she said in a Dispatch from Crame No. 194.
"A revolutionary government means the abrogation of the Constitution, the only thing that is keeping Duterte president of the country. Without the Constitution, there is no longer any legal basis for keeping Duterte in power," she added.
Last October, Duterte threatened to set up a revolutionary government and declare all positions in government vacant if the supposed attempt to destabilize his administration worsen.
In the absence of Duterte's constitutional mandate with the abolition of the Constitution, De Lima explained the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), which is possibly the only government institution that will survive without the constitution, is likely to grab power for itself since it is no longer bound to recognize Duterte as president.
According to De Lima, the APF - who can lead the country through a military council or junta led by its chosen generals - "does not have any reason" to tolerate a civilian leader like Duterte, who is tagged as China's lackey.
"As far as I am concerned, the military has no particular reason why it should want to keep Duterte as President in the absence of the 1987 Constitution. His record in kowtowing to China and selling out the Spratlys is notorious among the generals and junior officers. The AFP has never felt any affinity to the number one external security threat to the Philippines," she said.
"In the absence of Duterte's constitutional mandate with the abolition of the Constitution, the AFP's generals and junior officers have no reason whatsoever to continue tolerating a civilian leader who has not shown any resolve in asserting PH's hard-fought victory before the Arbitral Tribunal at the Hague, hence, weakening the AFP's external defense position in the country's territories in the West Philippine Sea," she added.
The Senator from Bicol further stated that Duterte's looming threat for a revolutionary government is now the most immediate domestic threat to the country
"The sooner the AFP realizes this, the better it can respond to this adventurist threat, if it does not choose first to grab power for itself. Who needs Duterte and his kakistocracy of the worst and banal of public officials, if the military has so much more talent to offer from its ranks than Duterte's dysfunctional lot of 'the best and brightest'?" she asked.
"We should never welcome a military takeover. But because of this infantile call for Duterte to declare a revolutionary government, that is exactly what we might end up with, and Duterte's head at the end of a stake," she added.
Source: Senate of the Philippines