President Duterte Never Said YES to Mary Jane Veloso's Execution

Tempo editor Rey Bancod called Emmanuel "Manny" F. Piñol, secretary, Dept. of Agriculture to validate a news report coming from Jakarta, Indonesia quoting President Joko Widodo as saying that President Rody Duterte gave his "Go" signal for the execution of convicted drug mule Mary Jane Veloso. DZMM anchor Anthony "Ka Tunying" Taberna  also asked him the same question.

Well, Manny was present during the bilateral talks between the Indonesian Government and the Philippine Government at the Istana Merdeka President Palace. He never heard Duterte saying yes and the go signal towards Veloso's execution.


(This photo taken by DTI Sec. Mon Lopez . It shows President Widodo seated across the table facing President Duterte while Sec. Yasay sits between Manny and the Philippine President. In front of Manny is a note pad and a ball pen which he used in taking down notes of the talks between the two Presidents.)


He was also present during the delivery of official statements by the two Presidents after the bilateral talks and joined the party during the State Dinner tendered by President Widodo for President Duterte and his Party.

It was President Widodo who made the opening statement and President Duterte responded by reading a prepared statement.

"We respect your laws. We will not interfere with your judicial processes but we are asking for clemency." Duterte said.

That statement referred not only to the case of Veloso but also for the 105 Filipino fishermen who are now detained in different jails all over Indonesia for alleged illegal fishing activities.

In fact, he did not even mention her name and only referred to her as a Filipino whose fate under Indonesian laws he would respect.

Source: Manny Piñol

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