MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said he has stayed quiet on the situation of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who face illegal drug charges.
"Yung mga drug cases even in Indonesia right now, you have not heard me talk about it because I hate drugs. True or not, I simply find it almost incongruous to me to be talking about these things because I really do not...I am the unforgiving, especially against drugs and slavery," Duterte said in a speech at the 7th anniversary of a public service show for OFWs in Pasay City.
In April, the mother of Filipino death row convict Mary Jane Veloso and relatives of other OFWs set for execution abroad asked President Duterte to save their loved ones.
Duterte, however, advised OFWs on Wednesday, to just follow the laws of the countries where they are employed because he cannot help them.
"So ngayon sabihin ko sa mga kababayan natin, sumunod kayo. Because pag nasabit kayo ng mga ganun, di talaga ako makatulong. If at all, it would take time," he said.
He also claimed that said families of OFWs are targets of drug suppliers due to their steady income.
"When both father and mother go out to work, the family is left to the care of the sister or brother, or to the aunts, then My God. Remember the Philippines, we have a large number of dysfunctional families," he said.
"Who are the targets? The sons and daughters of the poor family. Lalo na yung alam nila na may nagtatrabaho sa labas and there is a sure income. And every month, money is sent from whatever country by the father or mother to support his schooling in and his baon and everything," he added.