'I cannot respond,' Roque says when asked about Duterte's edited speeches

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 16 2020 05:01 PM

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque responds to follow up questions after a press briefing in Malacañang on Jan. 23, 2018. Toto Lozano, Presidential Photo/File

MANILA - Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on Thursday cannot explain why Malacañang has been editing President Rodrigo Duterte's speeches.

The Palace, in recent weeks, has been airing edited speeches of Duterte, many of which cut out significant portions of the Philippine leader's remarks.

Asked why the footage of Duterte's public address on Wednesday night appeared to have very minimal remarks from him, Roque responded: "Hindi ko po alam kung sino talaga ang nag-edit pero marami po sanang naipakita."

(I don't know who really edits it but there were a lot of things that could have been shown.)

The President is known to deviate from his prepared speeches, and delivers off the cuff remarks instead at most times.

Earlier this week, the Palace also omitted parts of Duterte's speech before soldiers in Jolo, Sulu where he mentioned the Lopezes and ABS-CBN Corp. as he tackled about dismantling oligarchy in the Philippines.

Roque was asked twice about the said issue during Thursday's Palace press briefing, to which he replied, "I was not there and I cannot respond."

On Tuesday, Roque said editing Duterte's speeches before being made public is not a policy.