When Vice Mayor Rodrigo Duterte told media he was afraid of taking a punch from daughter Mayor Sara Duterte soon after the mayor punched court sheriff Abe Andres, he was trying to avoid being pinned for premature comments that would add fire to the volatile situation.
He was also trying to skip being pushed to dish out disparaging remarks against officers of the courts here, many of whom are his friends and acquaintances.
Abe took a beating from Mayor Duterte on July 4, as the sheriff was supervising a court-ordered demolition of shanties in Agdao district.
Duterte, in the Gikan sa Masa Para sa Masa program on ABS/CBN on Sunday, said he purposely avoided commenting on the incident for two days hoping the issue would settle down.
He said some of the personalities involved in the issue are known to him.
Duterte said Regional Trial Court Branch 16 Judge Manuel Carpio, is the brother of Mayor Duterte’s father-in-law. The mayor is married to lawyer Mans Carpio.
Judge Carpio signed the writ of execution to demolish more than 200 urban poor shanties in Soliman street.
Duterte said that the brother of Andres who is now a judge is also an acquaintance whom he helped become a judge.
He also had said he knew many of the judges in the local courts having been a prosecutor for years before he entered politics.
The vice mayor said he told media “he was afraid of Sara’s punches” as he was pinned for comment soon after the July 4 incident.
Mayor Duterte was attending to relief operations for thousands of victims of the June 28 devastating flood that hit four barsangays in the southern part of the city when she rushed up to Soliman where Andres and demolition crews were about to start to tear down the shanties, as residents geared up for violence to stop the eviction.
She had earlier asked Andres to stay the demolition so she could talk to the affected residents to ward off any violence. Andres refused to heed her plea.
Two days after the incident—as Mayor Duterte was being crucified by critics for punching Andres — Duterte faced media with his dirty finger thrown at the mayor’s critics. He also slammed the court for the demolition order that he said violated provisions of the Urban Development and Housing Act (UDHA.)