MANILA—President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday said he does not intend to use his presidential burial plot at Libingan ng mga Bayani.
Duterte jested that he will just give it away through a raffle or give it to the highest bidder as he plans to be cremated and his ashes scattered.
"Kaming mga presidente may lote kami dyan sa Libingan ng mga Bayani. So 'yung akin, utos ko, 'yung ashes ko ibalik mo ako sa lupa, itapon mo. Ayaw ko 'yang seremonya-seremonya," Duterte said in a speech in Kidapawan City, Cotabato.
(Presidents have lots there at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. I gave the order for my ashes to be returned to earth, scattered. I don't want ceremonies.)
"Kaya 'yung lote ko sa Aguinaldo, ipa-raffle ko. Sino gusto magpalibing doon? Baka may ambisyon ka maging hero. Highest bidder tapos yung kita, bili natin ng bigas bigay natin sa mga tao."
(I will give away my lot in Aguinaldo through a raffle. Who wants to be buried there? Maybe you have ambitions becoming a hero. I will give it to the highest bidder then the proceeds will be used to buy rice and we'll give it to the people.)
The Heroes' Cemetery is located at Fort Bonifacio in Taguig.
The President brought up his plan as he again attacked the Catholic Church's notion of heaven and hell.
" 'Yung hawak ng simbahan na, ang tirada kasi nito sa mga mahihirap na ikaw you will burn in hell (The Church has a hold on the poor that they will burn in hell). They invented heaven and hell. May heaven kasi may pupuntahan ka talaga (There really is heaven because you will go somewhere). Why would God create you and throw you to the fires?" he said.
Duterte has hit Catholic teachings, tagged priests and bishops in corruption and abuse, and even called God "stupid."