Duterte is the only hope for the Philippines

SIR – On returning to the Philippines after 10 years in England, after a particularly exasperating day dealing with corrupt bureaucrats who applied glacial efficiency with anyone who would not pay a bribe, I lost my temper. It was clear that nothing had changed, just new paint on the walls and softer chairs for the clerks (our overlords) in the government office.

A few years and plenty of episodes later, we turned to prayer. For several months before our last elections we prayed each morning for change and a good president. It was clear to us that the establishment candidates had nothing whatsoever to offer

the country.

President Duterte (Week in Review, August 19) was a last-minute entry. He could see not only what the problems affecting the people were, but also what needed to be done in order to succeed in tackling them, where others had lacked any real resolve.

Many of the elite in the Church oppose him as his manner is less cordial than they are used to, and he was quick to challenge them to reform their hypocrisy, offering to provide a list of clerics with mistresses and offspring; even in the Church the problems are well known but there is an unwillingness to change.

Duterte seems to have had a rather unfair press so far, in my opinion. I think he is the best chance the country has had in living memory, as he never sought power but rather took up the gauntlet because he knew he must, not because he wanted to. That is a mark of authentic leadership. I think history will view Duterte as a man who walked with destiny and gave his country the opportunity to change.

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