Chief Justice: Don't depend on foreign intervention to solve PH problems

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 12) — As the country celebrates its 121st Independence Day, Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin urged Filipinos to refrain from relying too much on foreign nations to solve the country's problems.

"Huwag natin ugaliing umasa sa mga dayuhan sa paglutas sa ating mga hamon at mga pagsubok. Huwag natin waldasin ang pagkakataon ng pagunlad dahil lamang sa mga hindi pagkakaunawaan sa pulitika at pamamahala," he said at the Independence Day rites in Caloocan City on Wednesday.

Bersamin did not specify the problems he was referring to. But when asked if he was talking about complaints filed before the International Criminal Court , he said he cannot talk about it because a related case is pending before the Supreme Court.

There are two complaints filed against President Rodrigo Duterte before the ICC for charges of murder and crimes against humanity for his drug war. Former Ombudsman and ex-Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario also recently filed a complaint with the Hague-based court against Chinese President Xi over China’s alleged infractions in the West Philippine Sea. The ICC refers to such complaints as communication.

The Chief Justice insisted the rule of law in the country is working.

"'Yung pagpunta nila doon, sa tingin ko lang ha, parang propaganda. Marami naman tayong buhay na procedure dito at institution na makakalutas kung anuman problema gusto nila isangguni sa ibang bansa. Bakit hindi dito gawin?" he said without elaborating.

Bersamin also talked about allegedly onerous foreign loans.

"Walang ibang makakalutas sa ating hamon at problema kundi tayo rin. At kung tayo ay umaasa sa iba, hindi natin maumpisahan 'yan, kasi may pansariling agenda taga-ibang bansa. Tayo, bansa lang (natin) ang agenda," he said at the Independence Day rites at Caloocan City on Wednesday.

The Chief Magistrate said there is nothing wrong with taking loans from other countries, specifically China and United States, as long as there are no strings attached.

"Kung may tumulong na iba, welcome basta walang kondisyon. Kung ang China gusto tumulong, tumulong sila, walang kondisyon. Amerikano, tumulong sila, walang kondisyon," he said.

But he clarified absolute independence from other countries "is impossible."

"Hindi tayo totally independent. Kailangan natin makisama sa mga kapwa bayan natin," he said.

CNN Philippines correspondent Joyce Ilas contributed to this report.