Duterte says he'll fire another gov't official

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 16) — President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday said he will fire another government official when he returns to the country from official trips abroad.

In a speech before the Filipino community in Papua New Guinea, the President reiterated his crackdown against corrupt officials.

"I fired a Cabinet member during a Cabinet meeting for lying. May tinatanong ako sa kanya (I asked him). Did you consult your legal office? Sabi niya no," Duterte said, without naming the official.

"Nag-init ang ulo ko, sabi ko - and since then marami na ako until now and when I go back meron nanaman. Talagang tanggalin kita, sorry na lang," he added.

[Translation: "I got ill-tempered. I said - and since then I fired so many until now and when I go back there will be another. I will really remove you, I'm sorry."]

The President, who was in Papua New Guinea to attend the annual summit of Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders, did not name the official he is about to sack. 

He admitted that some of the government officials he had fired were his friends.

Duterte also reiterated that all Cabinet officials now have to get clearance before travelling abroad to avoid junkets. He issued this order in December 2017 after sacking all commissioners of the Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor and Dangerous Drugs Board chief Dionisio Santiago on allegations they splurged government money on junkets abroad. The officials denied the accusations.

Before heading to Papua New Guinea on Friday, Duterte attended the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations summit and related summits in Singapore, where he drew flak for skipping several events to catch up on sleep.