MANILA Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra on Friday said President Rodrigo Duterte only wants the best interest of the country in refusing to give in to critics' calls for hostile action against China following the June 9 incident involving 22 Filipino fishermen at the Recto Bank in the West Philippine Sea.
Speaking to newsmen, Guevarra said while "anyone is free to file an impeachment complaint against the President," as aired by opposition figures, this measure is not a purely legal proceeding.
"But remember that unlike an ordinary action in court, impeachment is not a strictly legal proceeding. It involves a whole gamut of political-economic and other considerations," Guevarra said.
"In the end the question is, did the president act against the general interest of the entire Filipino nation?," he added.
Criticism of Chinese presence in the country's economic zone arose after a Chinese vessel, identified as the Yuemaubenyu 42212 from Guangdong province in some accounts, reportedly hit a wood-hulled Filipino registered private fishing boat, the F/B Gem Ver last June 9.
A total of 22 Filipino fishermen from San Jose, Occidental Mindoro were subsequently rescued by a Vietnamese vessel and later transferred to a Philippine Navy ship, PS 16 BRP Ramon Alcaraz. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency